‘The Toulouse terrorist slipped through French siege’

ByJOSEPH STRICH JERUSALEM POST CORRESPONDENT
May 28, 2012 02:10

It is now known that Mohamed Merah left the apartment at 1 a.m., two hours before the final assault.




Mourners at funeral of Toulouse shooter Merah

Mourners at funeral of Toulouse shooter Merah 370 (R). (photo credit:REUTERS/Bruno Martin)

LYON – Mohamed Merah, the 23-year-old French terrorist who killed seven people in March, could have been captured alive if the commandos outside the apartment house where he holed-up had been more alert, according to new information released now.

After he killed three soldiers in mid-March, one in Toulouse and two in nearby Montauban, Merah, arrived on March 19 at the entrance to Toulouse’s Ozar Hatorah day school where he shot dead two boys, Aryeh, six, and Gabriel, three, their father, Rabbi Jonathan Sandler, 30, and then eight-yearold Miriam Monsonego.

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On March 21, police surrounded Merah’s apartment house on Sergent Vigné Street in a Toulouse suburb.

It is now known that the killer left the apartment at 1 a.m., two hours before the final assault, and walked 1 kilometer along the Avenue de la Gloire to a telephone booth where he called a journalist from the French/English/ Arabic TV channel, France 24.

The surveillance system put in place to cover Merah’s movements by the DCRI security agency (the Central Directorate of Interior Intelligence) totally failed, Le Parisien newspaper has now concluded, quoting an important agent from the agency: “The men in the surveillance position had fallen asleep, and because of that did not see Merah passing in front of them.”

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