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France: 'Al-Qaeda militant' takes hostages

20 June 2012, 13:21

 Toulouse - A man claiming to be an al-Qaeda militant took four hostages at a bank in the southern French city Toulouse on Wednesday and wants to negotiate with an elite police unit, police said.

The man entered the bank at around 09:00, fired a gun and before saying he wants to talk to the Raid police unit that shot dead al-Qaeda-inspired gunman Mohamed Merah in March at his flat, which is in the same neighbourhood as the bank.

Merah was killed at the end of a 32-hour siege of his flat after he shot dead seven people - three soldiers, and three children and a teacher at a Jewish school in Toulouse - in a wave of killings that shocked the country.

The 23-year-old who claimed to be an al-Qaeda militant filmed himself carrying out the attacks and reportedly confessed to police before he was shot dead.


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