Thirteen were injured in France yesterday evening after a car driven by a man shouting “Allahu Akbar” repeatedly drove into crowds, running over pedestrians in the French city of Dijon.
The Renault Clio was spotted rushing towards pedestrians at around 8PM Sunday night, hitting two groups of bystanders and knocking down thirteen people. Of those injured, two are thought to be in “very serious condition”. One of the victims was just eleven years old.
Although the name of the driver is not yet known, it is reported there were two passengers inside the car with him, and shouts of “Allahu Akbar” and “for the children of Palestine!”. The French Interior Spokesman has said the suspect is a “psychiatric patient”.
It is thought the driver was on his way to the local police station but was stopped before his completed his journey. A spokesman for French police said: “According to our information he was acting alone… He was arrested in the centre of the city, and was immediately placed in custody”. The spokesman said the suspect “may face terrorist charges, but that will be a decision for the justice system”, reports the Daily Mail.
French police have accepted the possibility that the suspect was attempting a copy-cat attack after the Jihadi café siege in Australia last week.
This may not be the only precedent for the attack. Just 24-hours before the car attack yesterday, A French-Burundian Muslim convert walked into a police station with a knife and seriously injured three officers before being shot to death. Before the attack Bertrand Nzohabonayo, 20, posted a black ISIS flag to his Facebook profile and shouted “Allahu Akbar” as he committed the attack.