Strasbourg reopened its traditional Christmas market under heavy security on Friday, the morning after French police shot dead a gunman suspected of killing four people in the heart of the historic city.
Cherif Chekatt, 29, was killed in the Neudorf neighborhood of Strasbourg after firing on police, ending a two-day manhunt that involved more than 700 members of the security forces.
The fourth victim, an Italian national, was named on Friday.
The attack on Strasbourg’s cherished Christmas market, a target full of religious symbolism, evoked France’s difficulties in integrating western Europe’s largest Muslim minority and dealing with homegrown militants inspired by Islamic State.
“It’s reopening just in time,” said stall-holder Bernard Kuntz, preparing his scarves and stoles imported from India, where President Emmanuel Macron was expected to arrive in the evening after a trip to Brussels.
“We were getting worried. Some of the guys have taken out loans to be here, and we’ve already lost two days.”
On Friday, 29-year old Italian journalist Antonio Megalizzi died as a result of the wounds he sustained in what Strasbourg Mayor Roland Ries said was indisputably an act of terrorism.
Italy’s Foreign Ministry said Megalizzi was in Strasbourg to follow the plenary session of the European Parliament for the Europhonica radio network.
Ries expressed relief that Chekatt had been killed and said everyone in Strasbourg, on eastern France’s Rhine river border with Germany, felt the same.
French troops, who have been used to bolster national security since a wave of Islamic State-inspired attacks began in France in 2015, stood guard at the open-air market.
“I think it will help to get back to a life that I would describe as normal,” Ries told reporters. “With the death of this terrorist ... citizens, like me, are relieved.”
نستخدم ملفات الكوكيز لنسهل عليك استخدام مواقعنا الإلكترونية ونكيف المحتوى والإعلانات وفقا لمتطلباتك واحتياجاتك الخاصة، لتوفير ميزات وسائل التواصل الاجتماعية ولتحليل حركة المرور لدينا...اعرف أكثر