NEWS

French ask for probe of two suspects tied to attacks

french-ask-for-probe-of-two-suspects-tied-to-attacks

French police have asked their Greek counterparts whether they have any information about two suspects believed to have had an active role in last Friday’s terrorist attacks in Paris, Kathimerini understands.

The two suspects, both said to be citizens of a Northern European country, are understood to have had some role in the attacks which killed more than 120 people and seven of the attackers. An eighth attacker remained at large last night as accomplices were sought by French police.

The two men who French authorities are said to have asked the Greek Police about are understood to have crossed through Greece by car, either on their way to or from the Middle East.

French investigators are also said to have sent Greek authorities details about the genuine identity of one of the Paris attackers who traveled to France via Greece in October with a forged Syrian passport. The French want more details about the man who was registered as a refugee on the Aegean island of Leros on October 3, as confirmed on Sunday by Greece’s minister for migration, Yiannis Mouzalas.

Greek police sources on Monday referred to reports that a large number of stolen passports from Syria are being used illegally, possibly by members of ISIS.

Sources told Kathimerini that experts of the European Union border monitoring agency Frontex are usually entrusted with checking for forged Syrian passports but that they were not on Leros on October 3.

As regards the suspected mastermind of the Paris attacks, Belgian national Abdelhamid Abaaoud, Greek police were asked in January to determine whether he ran a jihadist cell in the Belgian city of Verviers from Athens, Kathimerini revealed earlier this year. The secret probe did not lead to Abaaoud, though phone calls were traced between Athens and the Verviers cell, but it resulted in the extradition of a 33-year-old Algerian to Belgium on terrorism charges.

In a separate development Monday, Greek Defense Minister Panos Kammenos ruled out participating in military activities in Syria following the terrorist attacks in Paris.