By Scheherazade Bloul
By Scheherazade Bloul
Rabat – French and Belgian police have conducted raids throughout both countries in relation to the Paris attacks on Monday, which killed 129 people and injured more than 300.
Reuters news agency is reporting that French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said police had arrested 23 people and seized arms, including a rocket launcher and automatic weapons, in the 168 raids overnight and another 104 people were put under house arrest.
The overnight raids took place in French cities Toulouse, Paris, Jeumont and Grenoble, among other locations.
Meanwhile, a manhunt is underway for 26-year-old Frenchman Saleh Abdeslam based in Brussels who is one of three brothers believed to be involved in the Paris plot.
Belgian police and armed commandos surrounded houses looking for Abdeslam in the Brussels district of Molenbeek, which is home to many Muslim immigrants.
Authorities have advised people not to intervene if they find Abdeslam Saleh and to directly inform the police.
Here’s what we know so far about all the suspected Paris attackers:
Saleh Abdeslam: Police are currently searching for the 26 year-old Belgian born Frenchman who is considered the one who logistically helped the bombers. He allegedly rented the black Volkswagen Polo used by the men responsible for the Bataclan concert hall. Believed to be the “eighth attacker” or the only one who was not killed during the November 13 attacks.
Ismail Omar Mostefai: The first to be named in relation to the attacks. Born in the outskirts of Paris, the 29 year-old’s fingerprints were identified from a severed finger found near the Bataclan concert hall. According to Paris prosecutor François Molins, Mostefai was under intelligence services radar and marked as a high-priority for radicalisation. Mostafai’s criminal record shows eight charges for minor offences but no jail time. It is believed he had travelled to Syria.
Abdelhamid Abaaoud: Belgian born man has been named as the suspected mastermind of the attacks. The 27 year-old is known to authorities as an Islamist extremist and is believed to be linked to the foiled attack on a train from Amsterdam bound for Paris in August. Abaaoud is believed to be in Syria.
Ibrahim Abdeslam: Saleh’s older brother, 31, also named by Paris prosecutor François Molins as one of the attackers. French police identified him as the suicide bomber who blew himself up on Boulevard Voltaire.
Samy Amimour: was one of the suicide bombers at the Bataclan music hall, according to the Paris prosecutor. The 28-year-old Frenchman was known to French intelligence services and charged with terror offences in 2012 and was placed under judicial supervision. An international arrest warrant was issued for him after he disappeared. Three of his relatives were arrested in the pre-dawn raids.
Ahmad Al Mohammad: the suicide bomber who blew himself up outside the Stade de France. His name was found on a Syrian passport near his remains. The 25-year-old born in the north-western city of Idlib. He was suspected of travelling the refugee route from Syria in October after the Paris prosecutor’s office found his fingerprints matched those of a person who travelled through Greece last month.
Bilal Hadfi: one of three suicide bombers at the Stade de France. The 20 year-old French national is believed to have fought with the Islamic State in Syria.