Paris anti-terror raid 'foils imminent French attack'

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By Alasdair Sandford  with AFP, Reuters
Paris anti-terror raid 'foils imminent French attack'

French authorities say an anti-terrorist operation in a Paris suburb has foiled an imminent attack on French soil.

This operation follows an important arrest... which allowed us to foil an attack being plotted in France

One man was arrested at Argenteuil northwest of the capital on Thursday evening.

Following the arrest by the French counter-terrorism service, DGSI, the agency carried out a raid at an apartment block, during which explosives were reportedly discovered.

There is not thought to be a link with either November’s attacks in Paris or those in Brussels this week, according to the French interior minister.

“This operation follows an important arrest… which allowed us to foil an attack being plotted in France, which was at an advanced stage. The individual arrested, of French nationality, is suspected of being involved at a high level, in this plot. He was operating within a terrorist network which was planning to strike our country,” Bernard Cazeneuve said at a news briefing.

An unidentified police source has been quoted as saying that the arrested man had been convicted in his absence in another European country, over a case concerning the transport of Islamists to Syria.

Since the murderous attacks in Paris against the magazine Charlie Hebdo and a Jewish supermarket in January 2015, several more Islamist plots in France have been foiled according to the authorities.

Since the beginning of this year, 75 people have been arrested over terrorist-related activities, 37 of whom have been charged, with 28 of them remaining in custody, Bernard Cazeneuve said.