4 Linked To Paris Attack Appear In French Court

January 20, 2015

There have been developments today in France and elsewhere in Europe over the investigation into the Jan. 7 attacks in Paris that left 17 people dead.

Four men accused of providing logistical support to Ahmed Coulibaly, the gunman who took hostages at a kosher supermarket during the Paris attacks, appeared in court today. It’s not clear whether the four — all in the 20s — were aware of his plans.

Separately, French police arrested five Chechens in the south of the country, though local media say they were linked to organized crime not terrorism.

Bulgaria said it would extradite to France within the next 10 days a French man who is alleged to have links to the brothers who carried out the deadly attack on Charlie Hebdo, the satirical French weekly .

The brothers claimed allegiance to al-Qaida while Coulibaly said he belonged to the so-called Islamic State. No one has been charged for a direct role in the Jan. 7-9 terrorist attacks in Paris.

The attacks have prompted much soul-searching in France, which has Europe’s largest Muslim population. Prime Minister Manuel Valls said today France needs to “look at the reality of our country,” citing “a territorial, social and ethnic apartheid that has imposed itself on” France. The comments were reported by the Associated Press.

Separately, police in Germany raided 11 homes in Berlin, one in nearby Potsdam and one in Nordhausen. NPR’s Soraya Sarhaddi Nelson tells our Newscast unit that officials say they were searching for more evidence against the two Turkish nationals arrested last week. The two men are “accused of raising funds and buying military equipment for extremists in Syria as well as recruiting mostly Turkish and Russian nationals to fight in the Arab country,” she said. Police said no one in the raided homes was accused of wrongdoing.

Arrests were also made last week in Belgium where two terrorism suspects were killed. In Athens today, an Algerian suspected of links to jihadi groups in Belgium appeared at an extradition hearing.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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