French president warns “terrorist threat here to stay”

By on February 4, 2017


French President Francois Hollande warned that terrorism menaces are "here to stay" after a machete attack at the Louvre Museum on Friday morning. (Photo  By U.S. Department of State from United States [Public domain])
French President Francois Hollande warned that terrorism menaces are “here to stay” after a machete attack at the Louvre Museum on Friday morning. (Photo by U.S. Department of State from United States [Public domain])
PARIS—French President Francois Hollande warned that terrorism menaces are “here to stay” after a machete attack at the Louvre Museum on Friday morning.

An “aggressive” machete-wielding man rushed at soldiers, injuring one of them, while trying to enter the Louvre Museum.

“The incident was completely controlled,” Hollande said at an informal summit of EU leaders in Malta. “But (terrorism) threat is here to stay and we must confront it.”

“We have mobilized all the necessary means and we’ll continue to do so the time it will take,” he added in remarks posted on the Elysee website.

Earlier on Friday, a man yelling Allahou Akbar (God the Greatest) menaced soldiers and attacked them outside the Louvre Museum. He slightly injured one serviceman before his colleagues fired five bullets at him.

The attacker was seriously wounded in the incident “whose terrorism nature leaves little doubt”, according to Hollande.

The French president also hailed “the courage” and “determination” of soldiers to prevent an attack that would have put at risk the lives of 1,200 visitors.

Local media reported the attacker was a 29-year-old Egyptian national, who entered France legally from Dubai at the end of January.

The machete attacker carried two backpacks. He tried to get into the museum underground shop before being neutralized. No explosive has been found, according to Paris prefect Michel Cardot.

France has been a target of terrorist groups. Terrorist alert remains at high level.

It has imposed emergency rules since November 2015, when gunmen and suicide bombers claiming allegiance to the Islamic State (IS) killed 130 people in Paris.

Another attack last summer had left 86 victims, when a man drove a truck into a crowd celebrating Bastille Day in the southern city of Nice