A teacher has been killed and two others severely injured in a stabbing spree at a French high school late on Friday morning during which the suspected Islamist perpetrator shouted “Allahu Akbar” during the attack.
Police responded to an incident at the Gambetta High School in the northern French city of Arras following reports of an ex-student wielding a knife and attacking members of staff.
One teacher was pronounced dead by emergency responders, while another teacher and a security guard were hospitalized after sustaining several stab wounds, according to French broadcaster BFM TV.
French media outlets confirmed a 20-year-old Chechen man has been arrested on suspicion of murder, while his younger brother was also arrested in the vicinity of another high school.
“A police operation took place at the Gambetta High School in Arras. The perpetrator was arrested by the police,” confirmed Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin on X, formerly Twitter.
Breaking: Terror in France— Amy Mek (@AmyMek) October 13, 2023
Knife attack at Gambetta High School in Arras…one teacher killed, two seriously injured; the terrorist has been arrested
The Minister of the Interior, Gérald Darmanin, announces that the perpetrator has been apprehended.
The "individual" reportedly… pic.twitter.com/Wil1pi93cw
France’s anti-terrorism unit has taken charge of the investigation and several prominent French government officials including President Emmanuel Macron are expected to visit the scene later on Friday.
French Education Minister Gabriel Attal called for “all necessary measures to be taken without delay in order to strengthen the security of all schools and establishments and to engage the prefects.”
The attack comes on the same day that the former leader of Hamas, the terrorist group responsible for the slaughtering of hundreds of Jews in Israel last weekend, called for a day of jihad against the Western world.
Éric Zemmour, leader of the French right-wing Reconquête party, questioned the timing on social media.
“In Arras, jihad has just struck. A Chechen has just killed a teacher while shouting ‘Allah Akbar’. Was it in response to the call of the founder of Hamas this Friday?” he asked.
“Is it for the anniversary of the beheading of Samuel Paty? Politicians have imported death onto our soil. My thoughts are with the family of this professor and his colleagues whose reaction was heroic. We will not give up the fight against jihad,” Zemmour added.
The investigation into the attack is ongoing.