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French soldier stabbed

By Agencies in Paris | China Daily | Updated: 2013-05-27 07:12

French anti-terror investigators probed on Sunday the stabbing of a soldier in Paris in an attack that echoed the grisly killing of another soldier in London.

French soldier Cedric Cordier was in a hospital in stable condition after the stabbing on Saturday in a busy underground shopping and transport hub where he had been on patrol with two colleagues.

French President Francois Hollande said the stabbing could not be linked to the London murder "at this stage", although Interior Minister Manuel Valls said the "sudden violence of the attack" was similar.

The assault on another soldier three days after the British soldier Lee Rigby was hacked to death on a London street in an Islamist attack will raise fears of a spiral of brazen violence against Western soldiers on their home soil.

Hollande said French authorities are still piecing together information on the assailant in Paris, who staged an equally public attack but then melted into the crowd without a word.

"We still do not know the exact circumstances of the attack or the identity of the attacker, but we are looking at all options," Hollande told reporters accompanying him on a trip to Ethiopia.

Hollande cautioned against drawing a link to the London killing, but Valls said: "There are elements, the sudden violence of the attack, that could lead one to think there could be a comparison with what happened in London."

French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Cordier had been targeted because he was a soldier and said he was working with Valls to crack down on "terrorism".

"We are pursuing a merciless fight against terrorism and against any act that threatens our security," he told reporters after visiting the wounded man in hospital.


(China Daily 05/27/2013 page11)

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