Arrested on Saturday after the death in Paris of a German tourist, stabbed to death, and the attack on two other people with a hammer, Armand R., a young Frenchman from the Paris region, was known to the courts for his radical Islamism and his psychiatric disorders.

A German man was killed and two other people were injured in a knife and hammer attack near the Eiffel Tower in Paris on Saturday evening. The attacker, Armand R., was arrested shortly after the incident and placed in police custody. The anti-terrorism prosecution (Pnat) has taken up the investigation for assassination and attempted assassination in connection with a terrorist enterprise and for criminal terrorist association.

“The attack happened shortly after 9 p.m. between the quai de Grenelle and Bir Hakeim, the attacker attacked a couple of tourists,” reported Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin. “The man died from stabbing” and the attacker “attacked the wife of this German tourist” but her life was saved “thanks to a taxi driver who saw the scene” .

The attacker then crossed the bridge. Pursued by the police, he clearly attacked two other people whose lives were not in danger: one person was injured by a hammer blow to the eye and another was particularly “shocked”, again according to the story by Gérald Darmanin. At the time of the events, shortly after 9 p.m., near the Bir Hakeim bridge spanning the Seine, Armand R. shouted “Allah Akbar” several times, the minister said. The life of the suspect, who was neutralized by the police using a taser, is not in danger.

After his arrest, Armand R. told the police “that he was angry with what was happening in Gaza, that France would be complicit in what Israel was doing. He would have said that he was tired of seeing Muslims die, both in Afghanistan and in Palestine,” the interior minister said.

Very shortly before his attack, a video protesting his act was posted on social networks. In the video, the attacker mentions “the news, the government, the murder of innocent Muslims,” detailed a security source cited by AFP. At this stage, investigators do not know when it was filmed, but it was posted online “concurrently” with the act, according to this source.

Born in France in 1997 to Iranian parents, with whom he resides in Essonne, the young man, on file “S”, had already been arrested by domestic intelligence (DGSI) in 2016 for a planned attack in La Défense. At the time, he was suspected of having planned a stabbing attack in the business district west of Paris, at the instigation of a jihadist established in Syria, Maximilien Thibault, former member of Forsane Alizza. .

He was sentenced to five years in prison and was released in 2020 after four years of detention, said a security source cited by Agence France-Presse. He had been placed under judicial supervision and under Micas, an administrative system accompanied by measures comparable to those of judicial supervision, and aimed at preventing acts of terrorism.

Known for psychiatric disorders and radical Islamism, he had undergone psychiatric medical treatment throughout his detention and after his release. “The first months were encouraging”, he seemed to have “detached himself from religion” after his release, a security source told AFP. But this man with a “very impressionable”, “very unstable” personality has been raising concerns again since spring-summer 2022, according to this same source.