- ISIS claimed responsibility for the truck attack in the French city of Nice
- The terror group said the killer driver was its “soldier”
- The truck driver was identified as 31-year-old Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, a Nice resident of Tunisian origin
The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) claimed responsibility for the July 14 truck attack in the French city of Nice that killed 84 people celebrating Bastille Day. The terror group claimed the truck driver was its “soldier.”
In a statement published on Amaq, the terror group’s official news agency, the Islamic State said one of its soldiers carried out the attack “in response to calls to target nations of coalition states that are fighting ISIS.”
Although investigators have not yet found any evidence linking the driver, identified as 31-year-old Tunisia-born Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, to the Islamic State, French authorities did not dispute the terror group’s statement.
As per the Orange County Register, what is known publicly about Bouhlel so far suggests a troubled, angry man with little interest in the group’s ultra-puritanical brand of Islam. His neighbors, who expressed shock at the attack, described him as “uninterested in religion” and from a “regular family.” He reportedly ate pork and drank alcohol which is forbidden in Islam.
However, Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve suggested that the killer may have had a last-minute adoption of a more extremist worldview.
“It seems he was radicalized very quickly,” he said.
The Paris Prosecutor’s office is investigating five individuals who were not identified, but residents of the neighborhood where the killer used to live said his estranged wife is one of those who were taken into custody.