France: seven arrests in the investigation into the murder of Samuel Paty

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PARIS | Seven men aged 17 to 21 were arrested Tuesday in several regions of France in the investigation into the assassination of teacher Samuel Paty, beheaded in October in the Paris region, we learned from concordant sources.

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The suspects “appear on various messaging groups in which (Abdoullakh) Anzorov participated”, the young Russian Chechen having beheaded the teacher who had shown caricatures of Muhammad to his students, said a judicial source.

Among the seven men, some are also from the Russian Republic of Chechnya.

The arrests were carried out by the anti-terrorism sub-directorate (Sdat) and the General Directorate of Internal Security (DGSI) in several cities in France, a source familiar with the matter told AFP.

In December, five men aged 18 to 21 of Chechen origin, suspected of having had contact with the assailant, were released from custody, without prosecution at this stage.

In total, fourteen people are charged in the investigation into the assassination of Samuel Paty, 47, assassinated on October 16 near his college in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine.

Among the suspects are six college students. Five are being prosecuted for “complicity in a terrorist assassination”, accused of having allowed Anzorov, an 18-year-old refugee, to identify the professor.

Abdoullakh Anzorov claimed responsibility for his gesture in an audio message in Russian where he said he had “avenged the prophet” Mohammed, accusing the professor of having “shown it in an insulting manner”. He was killed shortly after by the police.

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