French supermarket siege: 3 dead

TREBES: Three people were killed in southwestern France on Friday when a gunman held up a car, opened fire on police and then took hostages in a supermarket. Police later stormed the supermarket in the small town of Trebes and the attacker was killed, Interior Minister Gerard Collomb told reporters on site.
The attacker was known to authorities for petty crimes but was not considered a threat, Collomb said, adding that he was believed to have acted alone.
More than 240 people have been killed in France in attacks since 2015 by assailants who pledged allegiance to IS group, which claimed the responsibility for Friday’s attack.
“He was known for petty crimes. We had monitored him and thought there was no radicalisation,” Collomb said, before adding: “He was known for possession of drugs, we couldn’t have said that he was a radical that would carry out an attack.”
Collomb said three people were wounded. He said that before the attacker seized hostages he killed one person while stealing a car with a bullet in the head in the nearby historic town of Carcassonne.
He then shot at police officers before taking hostages.
A 45-year-old lieutenant-colonel swapped himself in exchange for one of the hostages, Collomb said.
President Emmanuel Macron said the incident appeared to be a terrorist attack.
Trebes Mayor Eric Menassi told LCI TV that the man had entered the Super-U supermarket screaming “I’ll kill you all”.
BFM TV reported that he claimed allegiance to IS Collomb said the man had demanded the release of Salah Abdeslam — the prime surviving suspect in the IS attacks that killed 130 people in Paris in 2015. Abdeslam, a French citizen born and raised in Brussels, went on trial in Belgium last month.
He is accused of “attempted murder in a terrorist context” over a Brussels shootout in March 2016, four months after he fled Paris on the night of the carnage during which his brother was among the suicide bombers. — Reuters