Video shows moment Paris airport attacker grabbed soldier

FRANCE-ATTACK-AIRPORT

FRANCE-ATTACK-AIRPORT

In an interview Sunday with French radio Europe 1, a man identified as the suspect's father said that Belgacem wasn't a practicing Muslim and drank alcohol.

Over the weekend it emerged the Ben Belgacem originally launched attacks on a police traffic patrol and a packed bar with a pellet gun. He put a gun to her head and seized her rifle, saying he wanted to "die for Allah".

Then, 90 minutes later, he attacked the military patrol at Orly, causing panic and the shutdown of the French capital's second-biggest airport.

Ben Belgacem was meant to be reporting to police under bail conditions connected to an armed robbery, and there were fears he had been radicalised in jail. "My son was not a terrorist". He never attended prayer. Investigators were examining his telephone.

A member of France's elite police force at Orly airport. The violence has made security a key issue in France's two-round presidential election on April 23 and May 7.

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The Frenchman had been reporting regularly to police under the terms of a provisional release from custody, and did not have the right to leave the country. Belgacem's brother and a cousin were also released. No one at the airport was injured. Shortly after, he contacted his relatives to tell them he had "done something stupid", they told police. After fleeing the traffic stop, police said, Belgacem opened fire inside a bar that he frequented regularly before stealing another auto at gunpoint and making his way to the airport.

The attacker, Ziyed Ben Belgacem, was shot dead within three minutes during the ensuing standoff with the companion and another soldier, the Daily Mail reports.

Travellers walk on the highway following the evacuation of Orly airport. The shooting took place on the second day of a visit to Paris by Britain's Prince William and his wife Kate, which was unaffected. He added that his son called him before the assault to ask for forgiveness. "He said to me: "Daddy, please forgive me. I've screwed up with a gendarme". At the time of his death, Ben Belgacem was carrying a petrol can in his backpack, as well as 750 euros ($805) in cash, a copy of the Koran, a packet of cigarettes and a lighter.

An earlier search of Belgacem's home had found several grams of cocaine, the prosecutor said.

After taking one of the soldiers hostage, prosecutors said the two other soldiers fired three bursts, eight rounds in all, that killed him. Yesterday's attack comes after a similar incident last month at the Louvre Museum in Paris in which an Egyptian man attacked soldiers guarding the site.

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