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The suspected architect of the Paris attacks has been killed

Abdelhamid Abaaoud
Reuters
Dead.
  • Cassie Werber
By Cassie Werber

Cassie writes about the world of work.

Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

Updated at 9:43am ET

The man suspected of planning terrorist attacks on France that killed 129 people and wounded hundreds is dead, according to French prosecutors.

Abdelhamid Abaaoud was killed during yesterday’s seven-hour police raid, France announced today (Nov. 19). The operation, on an apartment in the north-Paris suburb of Saint-Denis, began before dawn yesterday morning and concluded before noon, with several arrests and at least two people confirmed to have been killed: one by a police sniper and the other, a woman who detonated a suicide vest. The woman has been identified as a cousin of Abaaoud, the New York Times reported (paywall).

Abaaoud, who grew up in Belgium, became radicalized, and traveled to fight in Syria in 2014, was identified by fingerprints, according to French prosecutor François Molins, in a statement. His body was riddled with bullets and shrapnel from a grenade used during the siege by French police, Molins said.

Abaaoud was connected to the Islamic State terror group, for whom he had fought in Syria before traveling back to Europe earlier this year. He was almost killed in a Western airstrike. He grew up in Molenbeek, an area in Brussels that has been called Europe’s “jihadi capital.”

The raid led to the arrests of several other people, but so far no information has appeared about another man suspected of taking part in the shootings and bombings in Paris last week, Salah Abdeslam. His picture was released by French authorities, and he appears to still be on the run.

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