Lt. Col. Arnaud Beltrame.
(photo credit: HANDOUT)
A former would-be politician in northwestern France was arrested on Saturday after praising an ISIS-inspired gunman's killing of a French police officer in a hostage situation in the southern city of Carcassonne on Friday.
French policeman who took place of hostage dies, March 24, 2018 (Reuters)
Stephane Poussier was detained under a French law that prohibits apologizing for terrorism, under which a stipulation states that individuals may not speak favorably about a terror attack.
Poussier, in a Facebook post, said that "every time a police officer is killed, and it's not every day, I think of my friend Remi Fraisse. And this time it was a colonel, great!"
Fraisse was an environmental activist who was killed by a stun grenade thrown by police during a demonstration. The colonel that Poussier was referencing was Lt. Col. Arnaud Beltrame. Beltrame was killed in Friday's attack when he offered to take the place of one of the hostages. He has been lauded as a hero by French and international leaders alike.
La France Insoumise, the political party with whom Poussier had entered elections, said that they had removed him from their party platform after his "shameful and abject" words, which they also condemned in a tweet.
Three French citizens, aside from Beltrame, were killed in the attack.