Two separate hostage situations happening in France simultaneously have ended. Three of the four suspects involved have been killed.
One suspect is now on the loose.
Although separate, both events are linked to the massacre at French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo on Wednesday. One hostage situation involved the Charlie Hebdo suspects at a printing company in a small northern town of Dammartin-en-Goeleand while the other involved a member of the same Paris jihadist cell taking hostages at a kosher supermarket in eastern Paris.
French police released these images of the 4 suspects related to the attacks (left to right): Cherif Kouachi (32), his brother Said Kouachi (34), Amedy Coulibaly (32), and a female accomplice Hayat Boumeddiene (26).
The Kouachi brothers, who police say carried out the Charlie Hebdo attack and went on the run, were killed in a standoff with French special forces after taking at least one hostage at the printing company.
Coulibaly, who is allegedly responsible for the second hostage situation, was killed by French police. Investigators are now searching for Boumeddiene, who is still at large and is reportedly connected to Thursday’s killing of a police officer in Montrouge, a town south of Paris.
Sources have linked Cherif and Coulibaly through French jihadist Djamel Beghal, according to French newspaper Le Monde. Beghal spent 10 years in prison for planning terrorist attacks, and Cherif is thought to have undergone militant training with him. Coulibaly is said to have visited Beghal at some point in recent years.
Coulibaly and Cherif are also both connected to another known terrorist, former Algerian Armed Islamic Group (GIA) member Smain Ait Ali Belkacem, who carried out terrorist attacks in France in the 1990s.
Cherif was arrested in 2010 in connection with Belkacem’s attempted prison escape. Said’s name also appeared in the police report, and although Cherif was held for four months, neither brother ended up being convicted.
Coulibaly was convicted in the case, the Paris Public Prosecutor’s office told ABC News, but police reportedly didn’t have enough evidence to prosecute Cherif or Said.
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