A woman holds a flower during a rally outside the Stade de France stadium, in Saint-Denis, north of Paris, Thursday, Nov. 19, 2015. The Belgian extremist suspected of masterminding the deadly attacks in Paris died along with his cousin when police stormed a suburban apartment building, French officials said Thursday, a day after the chaotic, bloody raid. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)
Highlights from Thursday, Nov. 19
- U.S. House approves a bill raising barriers against Syrian, Iraqi refugees; ignore Obama veto threat.
- Many of the five identified Paris attackers were on the United States' no-fly list
- French security forces have conducted 414 raids, making 60 arrests and seizing 75 weapons, including 11 military-style firearms
- D.C. Police Chief Lanier: We know we're a target
- France’s lower house of parliament, the National Assembly, voted Thursday to extend a state of emergency for three months. The measure now goes to the Senate.-The Paris prosecutor says that the suspected leader of the Paris attacks, Abdelhamid Abaaoud, was killed in a police raid. In a statement Thursday, the prosecutor's office said that Abaaoud's body was found in an apartment building targeted in the raid in Saint-Denis north of Paris Wednesday. It said he was identified based on skin samples.
Suspected ringleader likely behind 4 foiled attacks in France
The bodies recovered in the raid were badly mangled, slowing down the identification process.
Officials believed Abaaoud was in Syria and it’s not clear how he ended up near Paris. Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said France did not know before Friday’s deadly attacks that Abaaoud was in Europe.
He had bragged in the Islamic State’s English-language magazine, that he was able to slip in and out of Europe undetected.
Authorities have not detailed Abaaoud’s exact whereabouts in the days leading up to or actions during the deadly rampage that killed 129 people and injured hundreds of others last week at cafes, a rock concert and the national stadium.
Three police officials have told The Associated Press that a woman who died in the police raid Wednesday was Abaaoud’s cousin. One said the woman, Hasna Aitboulahcen, is believed to have detonated a suicide vest in the building after a brief conversation with police officers. It was not clear if she had any role in the attacks.
The official confirmed an audio recording, punctuated by gunshots, in which an officer asks: “Where is your boyfriend?” and she responds angrily: “He’s not my boyfriend!” Then loud bangs are heard.
Cazenueve said Thursday that Abaaoud was believed to be behind four of six attacks thwarted since spring by French authorities, including a planned April attack on a church in the Parisian suburb of Villejuif that was foiled when the would-be attacker shot himself in the foot and another on a high-speed train where three young Americans tackled a heavily armed man.
No one was killed in the train attack, but the would-be church attacker was blamed for the death of a woman found shot in her car.
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Highlights for Friday, Nov. 20
One week later: Paris mourns
Thousands of Parisians have turned out to pay tribute to those killed in last week's attacks.
Some lit candles and sang. Some danced in the street. Others held hands in silent contemplation at the Place de la Republique, which has become a central commemoration site for the victims of the Nov. 13 massacre.
The scene was repeated at the cafes and the concert hall where most of the 130 people who died lost their lives.
The attacks, claimed by militants from the Islamic State group, started shortly before 9.20 p.m. on Nov. 13 as Parisians enjoyed a Friday night out.
Dead woman in Wednesday raid wasn't a suicide bomber
The Paris prosecutor's office says a woman killed during a police raid in a Paris suburb did not blow herself up as police had previously thought.
Wednesday's raid on an apartment in Saint-Denis resulted in a seven-hour siege that ended with three people killed, including Abdelhamid Abaaoud, the suspected architect of Friday's devastating attacks in Paris, and Hasna Aitboulahcen, the 26-year-old daughter of a Moroccan immigrant.
The Paris prosecutor's office said Wednesday that investigators believed a woman had blown herself up in the siege. Police officials later said the woman was Aitboulahcen and she was believed to have detonated a vest. On Friday, prosecutors confirmed Aitboulahcen was killed in the police raid but said she was not a suicide bomber.
A third person killed in the Saint-Denis raid remains unidentified.
Turkish imams speak out against ISIS
Imams in mosques across Turkey have spoken out against Islamic State group in sermons read during traditional Friday prayers.
The sermon prepared by the government's Religious Affairs Directorate and read in all mosques, said recent IS attacks in Paris, Ankara, Beirut and Baghdad had not just killed innocent people but also ``Islam's holy values.''
It called the extremists ``murderous gangs hiding behind religion'' and likened them to invading ``Mongols'' or ``Crusaders.''
The sermon was read in some 80,000 mosques in Turkey and 2,000 Turkish mosques abroad.
It came a day after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on Muslim nations to stand united against the extremist groups, including IS, al-Qaida and Boko Haram, that he said were tarnishing Islam.
AP: Third body found at scene of raid in Paris suburb
The Paris prosecutor's office says that a third body was found overnight in an apartment raided by police searching for suspects in last week's Paris attacks. The office said in a statement Friday that the body is that of a woman but her identity is unclear.
France seeks partners’ aid to stanch inflow of extremists
One week after coordinated attacks claimed by Islamic State killed 130 people in Paris, French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve and the other EU interior and justice ministers used an emergency meeting to push for the next steps to increase security and prevent more bloodshed.
"We have talked enough. We have to act. It's not an option, it's an obligation,'' said Luxembourg's domestic security minster, Etienne Schneider, who chaired the meeting in Brussels. Read more here.
Recovery just the beginning for the wounded in Paris
Simply by staying alive, hundreds of people wounded in the Paris attacks are defying the Islamic State extremists who sought to kill them. Yet that defiance comes at an enormous price. By the French health ministry’s most recent count, on Wednesday, 195 people were still hospitalized, three of them in critical condition and 41 in intensive care. Read more here.
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