French miss: 'How can a 17yo acquire such an arsenal without detection?'
The French government issued an attack alert after a shooting occurred at a college in the southern town of Grasse. The alert was issued over the government's mobile app.
Three people, a high school principle among them, were injured. Five more people were said to be suffering shock.
The attack shocked France, which has some of the toughest gun laws in the world. Citizens are banned from owning automatic weapons, while other guns require authorization, together with a permit from a hunting or sporting organization.
On the same day, in Paris, a letter-bomb exploded at the office of the International Monetary Fund, injuring one person.
Following the incident, the French PM, Bernard Cazeuneve canceled a scheduled trip. President Francois Hollande has already called the incident a "terror attack".
RT: The school attacker was well-prepared, as he had a rifle, pistols and hand grenades with him. How was it possible for a 17-year-old to get all these weapons?
Charles Shoebridge: We don’t know yet whether all of those weapons were actually real as opposed to fake weapons, props, or something like that that you could use to intimidate or scare. But in fact, we’ve got so many injuries clearly suggesting that at least one of those was a functioning live weapon. The fact that [the attacker] was carrying grenades suggests that they may have been operational also. So, I think there are going to be two main points that people are going to be looking at here, apart from looking whether there are any accomplices and of course getting the injured back on their feet again.
First is the critically important point: how could it be that anybody, let alone a 17 year old, can acquire such a mini arsenal without having been detected. And secondly, I think people will want to look whether any warning signs beforehand were missed.
RT: President Hollande has called the letter-bomb incident at the IMF office a terror attack. Is this a return to this type of tactic?
Peter Kirkham, former police officer: There haven’t been many letter-bomb type attacks in recent times. It was something that was used from previous terror campaigns with various different motives behind them. It is also something that has been used in the past as one-off attacks by somebody with a grudge for some reason. It is far too early to establish exactly what the motivation is behind it. It is the sort of attack that may have various motivations.
The target of the IMF throws us a potential international angle. It could be somebody associated with some state that feels they have some sort of grievance with the IMF, for how the decisions of the IMF have impacted on their state and their lives. It also throws up the potential for somebody with a grievance for the financial institutions of the world.
So the potential motivations, the potential grievances behind it are sort of magnified by the nature of the venue of the attack.
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