NEWS
13/12/2018 20:35 GMT | Updated 13/12/2018 22:10 GMT

Strasbourg Shooting Suspect Cherif Chekatt Is Dead - Officials

'With the death of this terrorist ... citizens like me are relieved'

The suspected gunman, who killed three people at a Christmas market in Strasbourg on Tuesday, has been killed, officials in France have said.

Cherif Chekatt, 29, was killed in the Neudorf/Meinau area of the city after a police operation was launched around 8pm British time on Thursday. 

It followed armed French police launching an operation, some with their guns trained on the houses in front of them. Other officers extended a security perimeter in the neighbourhood.

Associated Press
Chérif Chekatt was being pursued by French police and intelligence services.

Interior Minister Christophe Castaner told reporters that three police officers came across a man they believed to be Chekatt and went to arrest him.

He turned to fire on them and they shot and killed him, Castaner said.

“I think it will help to get back to a life that I would describe as normal,” Strasbourg Mayor Roland Ries told reporters after news that Chekatt had been killed.

“With the death of this terrorist ... citizens like me are relieved,” he said

The death toll from Tuesday night’s attack rose to three on Thursday, as police combed the city in the east of France for a second day and manned checkpoints on the German border.

Police issued a wanted poster in multiple languages for Chekatt, who was the main suspect in the attack and who had been on a watchlist as a potential security threat.

Authorities say the 29-year-old was known to have developed radical religious views while in jail.

The Paris prosecutor’s office said Chekatt’s parents and two brothers were being held in custody.

Two of his sisters in Paris were also questioned on Thursday and one of their homes was searched, a judicial source said.