The French head of state “wanted to talk to the pope at a time when Catholics in France were so violently wounded and all French were shocked by the attack” with the knife in the Basilica of Notre-Dame de l’Assomption in Nice, he announced Friday the presidency.
Macron evokes the memory of the priest Hamel, assassinated in the Church of Saint-Etienne du Rouvray.
The two leaders share a “total convergence of views” on “the absolute rejection of terrorism and the ideology of hatred that separates, kills and endangers peace” and on the importance of dialogue between religions.
The French government has decided to strengthen the security of Christian places of worship this weekend, when the French celebrate Toussaint.
The second man in contact with the attacker, arrested
Meanwhile, a second man in contact with the alleged perpetrator of the attack in the basilica was detained on Friday night by the elite unit of the French RAID police in Nice and placed in pre-trial detention, according to a source close to the investigation, reports Le Figaro.
The 35-year-old man, who lives in Nice, is suspected of “being with the perpetrator the day before the attack, just like the first” suspect, aged 47, arrested on Friday night.
The hearing of the first arrested man, who is accused of talking to the attacker, continued. But he “had nothing to do with the attack,” a source close to the newspaper said.
The French National Anti-Terrorist Prosecutor’s Office (PNAT) has opened an investigation into “assassinations and attempted assassinations in connection with a terrorist enterprise” and “criminal terrorist association”.
Detention after broadcasting a photo of a victim
On the other hand, a man was placed in pre-trial detention on Friday, after he posted online a photo with one of the three victims, aged 60, of the bloody attack in the basilica of Nice, the Paris Prosecutor’s Office announced , which opened an investigation.
The man is suspected of being the origin of the publication of the photo on a forum of the Jeuxvideo.com site, according to a source close to the case.
The suspect was interrogated at the headquarters of the Brigade for the Suppression of Crime against the Person (BRDP), the prosecutor’s office specified, without providing details about his profile.
An investigation into the “dissemination of a violent message” has been opened, the prosecutor’s office said.
The photo of the 60-year-old woman, who was almost beheaded, was shared on social networks and several sites.
The Pharos platform, tasked with detecting illicit online content, has reported several releases of this image.
In addition to the woman, the attacker cut the neck of the sacristan of the Basilica of Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption in Nice, Vincent Loquès, the father of two daughters and who would have turned 55 on Friday.
The third victim, a Brazilian, the mother of three children, 44-year-old Simone Barreto Silva, was stabbed several times and died in a restaurant where she took refuge.
The perpetrator, Brahim Issaoui, a 21-year-old Tunisian, was stopped by police, who shot him several times.
Seriously injured, he was hospitalized and his life was still in danger.