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Siblings of Marseille attacker detained in Tunisia

October 10, 2017 at 1:04 pm

The two victims of the Marseille knife attack were identified. 2 cousins, Mauranne (left) and Laura (right), both 20

The brother and sister of the attacker who stabbed two women to death in the French city Marseille earlier this month have been detained in Tunisia, authorities confirmed yesterday.

The siblings, who are reportedly Moez and Amina Hanachi, were arrested for questioning on Friday by anti-terror investigators, prosecution spokesman Sofiene Sliti said.

“They appeared before an investigating judge … who decided to transfer the case to the National Guard” in the north-eastern city of Aouina.

Another brother, Anis, was also arrested on Saturday night in Italy after French authorities issued an international arrest warrant for his detention after evidence surfaced that he had “waged jihad in Syrian-Iraqi territory, with military experience”, Lamberto Giannini, head of Italy’s counterterrorism team said.

The Hanachi’s brother, Ahmed Hanachi, 29, stabbed two women at Marseille’s Saint-Charles train station before he was shot dead by troops. Hanachi had been living in the south of Rome and was married to an Italian woman before he was killed.

Daesh later claimed responsibility for the attack but French investigators are yet to find evidence that Hanachi was connected with the group.

Read: Hundreds protest return of militants in Tunisia

Ahmed, the second-youngest of five siblings, was not known to attend any mosque, but was known to the police for drug and alcohol problems.

According to Tunisian security officials Ahmed and another brother, Anouar, were suspected of being “extremists” however their father Noureddine told AFP that his son Ahmed had not been radicalised but may have been under “the influence of drugs” when he carried out the attack.

Earlier this year, a Tunisian ploughed his truck through a busy market in Berlin and was later shot dead by Italian authorities after he escaped to Italy whilst on the run.