Paris: French officials identify suspected mastermind as Belgian Abdelhamid Abaaoud and French police have carried out “more than 150” raids on suspected Islamists since the attacks on Paris, Prime Minister Manuel Valls said on Monday, as a source in the southeastern city of Lyon said an arsenal of weapons had been seized there.
Police sources in Paris said “several dozen” pre-dawn raids were carried out in French cities on Monday, including in Bobigny, an eastern suburb of the capital. 168 raids were conducted in the country & 104 people have been put under house arrest: French Interior Minister.
Thirteen raids were carried out around the southeastern French city of Lyon, a local police source said. They led to five arrests and the seizure of “an arsenal of weapons,” including a rocket launcher, a Kalashnikov assault rifle, bulletproof vests, handguns and combat gear, the source said.
Police also carried out raids in Toulouse in southwestern France, where at least three people were arrested, according to the local prosecutor’s office. In the Alpine city of Grenoble, according to the local newspaper Le Dauphine Libere, at least half a dozen people were arrested and guns and money were seized.
Police have additional powers under a state of emergency declared after the attack on Friday that left 129 people dead and more than 350 injured.