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Toulouse shooting: killer 'was on US no-fly list'

London, Fri, 23 Mar 2012 ANI

London, Mar.23 (ANI): France is facing calls for a far-reaching intelligence inquiry following reports that a suspected al-Qaeda-trained killer shot dead after a marathon siege in Toulouse was on the US no-fly list.

Mohammed Merah, 23, was wanted in connection with the killings of three French paratroopers, a rabbi and three children ages 4, 5, and 7.

According to The Telegraph, the French authorities are facing growing criticism that it should have prevented a killing spree by a known fundamentalist who was the US no-fly list and had attended an al-Qaeda training camp.

Jund al-Khilafah, an al-Qaeda front organisation claimed responsibility for the shootings in a statement posted on jihadist websites.

Merah also admitted responsibility for the shootings during long talks with negotiators.

The scooter-driving gunman filmed all his murders with a mini-camera, and can be heard shouting "Alluha Akbar" and "You killed my brothers, I kill you" in two of the shootings.

He told authorities he had been trained by Al-Qaeda on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.

Claude Gueant, the Interior minister admitted that he had been under surveillance "for several years", adding he had never "shown any sign of preparing criminal acts" at the outset of the siege.

Increasingly damning evidence suggested France was aware Mehar posed a threat.

French intelligence had previously alerted security services in Spain that Merah was planning to travel to the Costa Brava to attend a meeting of Islamist activists, suggesting they considered him dangerous.

The warning said that he was probably on his way to attend a suspected Salafist congress. (ANI)

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