Four people from an Islamic jihadist recruiting network have been arrested in France a day after authorities announced the detention of a Muslim French national suspect in the deadly shooting at a Jewish museum in Brussels, the country’s top security official has said.
The Guardian The French interior minister, Bernard Cazeneuve, said the latest arrests took place on Monday morning in the Paris region and the south of France. “We will not give terrorists a chance,” Cazeneuve told Europe 1 radio.
A suspected French jihadist who had spent time in Syria was arrested on Friday over the deaths of three people at the Belgian museum, and found in possession of firearms, ammunition and a video claiming responsibility for the attack on 24 May. Cazeneuve said the suspect, Mehdi Nemmouche, was arrested minutes after he set foot on French soil.
Vinienco Interior Minister Bernard Cazaneuve told Europe 1 radio on Monday: “There are people who recruit jihadists. There are as I’m speaking arrests being made.” “We are acting everywhere. There will be no respite in the fight against terrorists.”
There is no suggestion of a link between the four arrests on Monday and the detention of Mr. Nemmouche during a random check on a coach arriving from Amsterdam in southern France on Friday. But Mr. Nemmouche is said to have had links with radical Islamists and served five years in jail in France for robbery before being released in December 2012.
When he was arrested, he had with him a Kalashnikov rifle and a handgun believed to have been used in the attack, the Paris prosecutor said. He was also said to have had a white sheet emblazoned with the name of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, a jihadist group fighting in Syria, and a camera with a 40-second video showing the two guns and a voice recording, claiming responsibility for the killings.
Belgium has requested Mr. Nemmouche’s extradition from France and police have to decide whether to extend his detention until Thursday.