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Merah Toulouse shootings probe revelations

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Merah Toulouse shootings probe revelations The families of the victims of Mohammed Merah, a French-born Islamist radical who killed 8 people in a shooting spree last March, have called for a parliamentary enquiry after revelations that police failed to act on evidence which suggested that the 23-year posed a significant risk to the public. Merah was already known to local authorities and considered to pose a "high level of danger." Police were aware of his links to hard-line Salafists Muslims and his trips to Pakistan and Afghanistan, although it is not yet known if he received jihadist training whilst abroad. Investigators also noted that Merah's family was known to have long-held radical Islamic beliefs. Toulouse police say they were ignored when they alerted central authorities to the threat as early as June 2011 with the recommendation that Merah's file should be turned over to the Parisian anti-terrorism department. Five months later anti-terror police commenced investigations into Merah's alleged jihadist links, but came to the conclusion that surveillance should be stepped down. Surprisingly, central office also suggested Merah might be a likely candidate for recruitment in the French intelligence services due to his extensive travel experience. It has also been suggested that a lack of coordination between local and central authorities meant that the 23-year old gunman was not recognized and arrested following his first attacks, in which two French soldiers were ...
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