Kouachi brothers told negotiators they wanted to die martyrs

One was convicted of terror charges in 2008, the other visited Yemen for training with the AQAP

Updated - December 04, 2021 11:32 pm IST

Published - January 10, 2015 12:29 am IST - DAMMARTIN-EN-GOELE (FRANCE):

A helicopter flies over a building, where the suspects of a shooting at a Paris newspaper office were holed up, after security forces stormed it in Dammartin-en-Goele, France on Friday.

A helicopter flies over a building, where the suspects of a shooting at a Paris newspaper office were holed up, after security forces stormed it in Dammartin-en-Goele, France on Friday.

After struggling for hours with two rapidly developing hostage-taking situations on Friday, French security forces launched assaults — one in the northeast of Paris where two terror suspects were holed up with a hostage in a printing plant and the other an attack on a kosher market in Paris — killing all three and evacuating the hostages.

The two brothers — Cherif Kouachi (32) and Said Kouachi (34), suspected in the deadly terror attack on Wednesday — were cornered by police on Friday inside a printing house in the small industrial town of Dammartin-en-Goele. One lawmaker said they told negotiators they “want to die as martyrs.”

Police SWAT squads descended on the area near Paris’ Porte de Vincennes neighbourhood and France’s top security official rushed to the scene.

The attack came before sundown when the market would have been crowded with shoppers.

France has been on high alert for other attacks since the country’s worst terror attack in decades — the massacre on Wednesday in Paris that left 12 people dead at the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo .

But French officials could not confirm reports of a link between the hostage-taker at the kosher market on Friday and the two suspects holed up at the printing house.

Car hijacked French security forces had poured into Dammartin-en-Goele near Charles de Gaulle airport after the two terror suspects hijacked a car early on Friday in a nearby town.

One of the men had been convicted of terrorism charges in 2008, the other had visited Yemen. A U.S. official said both brothers were on the American no-fly list.

“They said they want to die as martyrs,” Yves Albarello, a local lawmaker who said he was inside the command post, told French television station i-Tele.

Authorities evacuated a school near the CTF Creation Tendance Decouverte printing plant around midday on Friday after the suspects agreed by phone to allow the children safe passage, town spokeswoman Audrey Taupenas told The Associated Press. About an hour later, an AP reporter counted nine large, empty buses headed toward the area, apparently to evacuate the children.

A man who said he had his car stolen early on Friday told Europe 1 the first man who approached him was armed with machine gun and the second man had a gun “with a kind of grenade at the end.”

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