Paris Orly airport attacker identified as Ziyed Ben Belgacem

Emergency services arrive at Orly airport southern terminal after shooting incident near Paris. (Reuters)

A man who was shot dead by French police after seizing a soldier’s gun at Paris Orly airport in France on Saturday has been identified as 39-year-old Ziyed Ben Belgacem.

Along with his father and brother, a cousin of the attacker has now been detained, Paris prosecutor Francois Molins told a press conference.

The man was known to police and intelligence services, Interior Minister Bruno le Roux told reporters. A police source described him as a radicalized Muslim but did not identify him by name.

The anti-terrorism prosecutor opened an investigation.

A picture taken from the screen of a monitor on March 18, 2017 shows a man lying on the ground of a terminal building at Paris' Orly airport after he was shot by French security forces for taking a weapon from a soldier. (AFP)

A picture taken from the screen of a monitor on March 18, 2017 shows a man lying on the ground of a terminal building at Paris' Orly airport after he was shot by French security forces for taking a weapon from a soldier. (AFP)

The busy Orly airport south of Paris was evacuated and security forces swept the area for bombs to make sure the dead man was not wearing an explosive belt, but nothing was found, interior ministry spokesman Pierre-Henry Brandet told Reuters.

“The man succeeded in seizing the weapon of a soldier. He was quickly neutralized by the security forces,” Brandet said.

No one else was injured at the airport.

The soldier whose gun the man tried to seize was a member of the army’s “Sentinelle” operation responsible for patrolling airports and other key sites since January 2015 when Islamist attackers killed 12 people at the satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo. It was reinforced after the Paris attacks.

Around 3,000 passengers were evacuated from the airport, the second busiest in the country.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:49 - GMT 06:49
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