By Lisa Bryant
Police in France killed one man and arrested 10 others in an anti-terror sweep in cities across the country Saturday. Authorities have linked the suspects to the firebombing last month of a Jewish grocery store outside the city.
Paris prosecutor Francois Molins told reporters that the main suspect, 33-year-old Jeremy Sidney, was killed by police as he opened fire on them during a Saturday morning raid in the eastern city of Strasbourg.
The prosecutor described Sidney as a delinquent with ties to radical Islam. Molins said police had linked Sidney to the DNA found on a grenade that exploded in September at a kosher store near Paris.
Molins said police were questioning 10 others following raids that also took place in southern France and the Paris region. A couple of other suspects remain at large. The prosecutor said all the suspects were French nationals and at least three have police records.
Molins said police had cracked a terror cell – a move that drew praise from French President Francois Hollande.
The September grenade explosion came amid angry Muslim protests against the publication of French cartoons and a crude privately produced American video mocking the Prophet Muhammad.
Concern in France about homegrown, radical Islam heightened this year, after Islamist Mohammed Merah killed seven people in the southern city of Toulouse. Four of those killed were Jewish.
On Wednesday, France’s Socialist government introduced legislation that would increase the power of the police to detect and arrest people attending combat training camps in conflict zones like Pakistan and Afghanistan. That was the case with Merah.