Recap: Knife attacks in France since 2015

Recap: Knife attacks in France since 2015

French police at the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Nice in southern France on Thursday, when a knifeman
French police at the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Nice in southern France on Thursday (Oct 29), where a knifeman killed three people. (Photo: AFP/Valery Hache)

PARIS: A knife-wielding attacker beheaded a woman and killed two other people in a suspected terrorist attack at a church in the French city of Nice on Thursday (Oct 29).

Here's a recap of knife attacks in France since 2015.

2020

Oct 16: A teacher is decapitated near a school on the outskirts of Paris. The assailant is shot dead by police. 

Prosecutors say they are treating the incident as "a murder linked to a terrorist organisation". 

Police say the victim had recently shown caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed in class.

Sep 25: A man armed with a knife seriously wounds two people in a suspected terror attack outside the former offices of French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo in Paris.

The attack takes place three weeks into the trial of men accused of being accomplices in the 2015 massacre of the newspaper's staff.

READ: 2 French women charged over 'racist' stabbing of veiled Muslim women

READ: France closes Paris mosque in clampdown over teacher's beheading

The attack took place in the southeastern town of Romans-sur-Isere
The scene of a knife attack in Romans-sur-Isere near Lyon, France, on Apr 4, 2020. (Photo: AFP/Jeff Pachoud)

Apr 4: In south-eastern Romans-sur-Isere, a riverside town, a 33-year-old Sudanese refugee goes on a stabbing spree in broad daylight, killing two people.

After the rampage, the assailant is arrested without a fight and prosecutors launch an investigation into "murder linked to a terrorist enterprise" and "association with terrorist wrongdoers".

French police secure an area after a knife attack in a public park in Villejuif
French police secure an area in Villejuif, near Paris, on Jan 3, 2020, after police shot dead a man who tried to stab several people in a public park. (Photo: Reuters/Charles Platiau)

Jan 4: A knife-wielding man runs amok in a park south of Paris, killing a man walking with his wife and wounding two other people before being shot dead by police.

Anti-terror investigators take over the probe following evidence that 22-year-old Nathan C had recently converted to Islam.

2019

Oct 3: Mickael Harpon, a 45-year-old computer expert in the Paris police intelligence-gathering department, uses a kitchen knife and an oyster shucker to kill four colleagues.

His 30-minute rampage ends when an officer shoots him dead. 

It emerges that Harpon had converted to Islam about 10 years previously and had connections in the ultra-conservative Salafist movement.

An image grab taken from a video released on May 13, 2018 by Amaq, the Islamic State group's
An image taken from a video released on May 13, 2018, by Amaq, the Islamic State group's propaganda agency, shows Khamzat Azimov, who grew up in Strasbourg. (Image: AFP)

2018

May 12: Khamzat Azimov, 20, a naturalised Frenchman of Chechen origin, stabs to death a 29-year-old man in Paris' busy Opera district before being shot dead by police.

The Islamic State (IS) group claims responsibility.

2017

Oct 1: A 29-year-old Tunisian kills two young women with a knife at the main train station in the southern city of Marseille.

He is shot dead by soldiers and IS claims his attack.

The grisly murder at the church in Saint-Etienne du Rouvray traumatised the town but residents say
The grisly murder of an 85-year-old priest at the church in Saint-Etienne du Rouvray traumatised the town. (Photo: AFP/Charly Triballeau)

2016

Jul 26: Two teenagers slit the throat of an 85-year-old priest in front of worshippers in a church in the western town of Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray.

The 19-year-olds are killed by police and their act claimed by the IS group to whom they had sworn allegiance in a video.

Jun 13: A 25-year-old uses a knife to kill a police officer and his partner at their home in Magnanville, west of Paris, in front of their young son.

He is killed by a police SWAT team but has already claimed the murders on social media in the name of IS.

2015

Jun 26: A 35-year-old attacker beheads his boss and displays the severed head, surrounded by two Islamic flags, at Saint-Quentin-Fallavier in south-eastern France.

He commits suicide in his jail cell.

Source: AFP/kg

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