LISTEN LIVE: Our Body Politic
LISTEN LIVE: Our Body Politic


2 Suspected Gunmen In 'Charlie Hebdo' Attack Remain At Large

A police bulletin sought the public's help in finding two suspects in the deadly attack on a satirical magazine's Paris offices Wednesday. Pictured are brothers Cherif (left) and Said Kouachi. (La prefecture de Police)
A police bulletin sought the public's help in finding two suspects in the deadly attack on a satirical magazine's Paris offices Wednesday. Pictured are brothers Cherif (left) and Said Kouachi. (La prefecture de Police)

French police have taken an 18-year-old suspect identified as Mourad Hamyd into custody after he surrendered to authorities, according to multiple French news outlets. Hamyd had been sought in relation to a murderous attack on a satirical magazine's Paris office Wednesday, but it's not certain whether he was involved.

The two central suspects in the attack at the office of the weekly Charlie Hebdo remain at large; regional police issued a new plea for help in finding two French-born brothers, Said and Cherif Kouachi, both in their 30s.

They're believed to be the gunmen who used powerful assault rifles to kill journalists and police officers at the office around midday Wednesday.

The Kouachi brothers are said to be French citizens.

Update at 11:30 a.m. on Jan. 8: ID Card:

Agence France-Presse, the BBC and other media are reporting that an ID card belonging to Said Kouachi was found in an escape vehicle. Earlier, we had said the ID belonged to Hamyd.

Our original post continues:

French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuze said late Wednesday that in addition to police forces, more than 800 members of the military will help maintain security in the Paris area Thursday.

The massive manhunt for the suspects included a large police force taking up positions in a neighborhood in Reims, some 90 miles east of the capital. That operation ended without incident.

Earlier in the day, the nation was put on high alert over what French President Francois Hollande called a "terrorist operation."

The brutal attack, carried out around midday, killed at least 12 people, including several cartoonists who helped to found the magazine. Two police officers were killed.

The shocking attack on a weekly magazine known for its satirical and irreverent cartoons that included images of the Prophet Mohammed. In response, many in France and elsewhere poured into the streets to hold vigils and demonstrations, rallying around the phrase "Je Suis Charlie" – I Am Charlie.

Cartoonists in and outside of France also responded to the attack, drawing images that commented on the attack, religion, and the ideal of free expression.

Parts of the attack were captured on eyewitness video. As they prepared to flee the scene in a black car, one of the gunmen shouted, "We have avenged the Prophet Muhammad," NPR's Eleanor Beardsley reports.

Video from the scene also depicted one of the gunmen shooting a wounded police officer at point-blank range.

Here's how the AP describes one of the suspects:

"Cherif Kouachi was convicted in 2008 of terrorism charges for helping funnel fighters to Iraq's insurgency, and sentenced to 18 months in prison. During his 2008 trial, he told the court he was motivated by his outrage at television images of torture of Iraqi inmates at the U.S. prison at Abu Ghraib."

Photos: At Least 12 Dead In Shooting At Satirical Publication's Office In Paris

An estimated 5,000 people gather at the Place de la Republique to show solidarity after a terrorist attack Wednesday in Paris. Twelve people were killed, including two police officers; police are still looking for the two gunmen. (Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images)
People gather in front of City Hall in Rennes, western France, in a show of respect for those slain Wednesday in an attack on the headquarters of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. At least 12 people were killed, according to police. (Damien Meyer/AFP/Getty Images)
People light candles during a vigil at the Place de la Republique in Paris. French President Francois Hollande declared Thursday a day of mourning and asked the French to hold a minute of silence at noon. (Martin Bureau/AFP/Getty Images)
Papers reading "Je Suis Charlie" — "I am Charlie" — are left near candles at a vigil in front of the French Embassy in Berlin. (Carsten Koall/Getty Images)
A Kosovo Albanian woman lights a candle next to an "I am Charlie" sign during a gathering in Pristina. (Armend Nimani/AFP/Getty Images)
People hold pens during a vigil in London's Trafalgar Square. (Rob Stothard/Getty Images)
Ambulances gather in the street outside the Charlie Hebdo office in Paris. Hollande promised that "everything will be done to capture the perpetrators" and bring the gunmen to justice. (Francois Mori/AP)
Forensic experts examine a car believed to have been used as an escape vehicle by the assailants. Four of the magazine's founding cartoonists were killed in the attack, according to French news outlets. Eleven other people were injured, four of whom are in critical condition. (AP)
French Justice Minister Christiane Taubira reacts to the scene after the attack. (Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP/Getty Images)
An injured person is evacuated outside the office. In 2011, Charlie Hebdo was the target of a firebomb attack after it printed a drawing of the Prophet Muhammad. (Thibault Camus/AP)
French soldiers patrol in front of the Eiffel Tower. The capital was placed under the highest alert status following the attack. (Joel Saget/AFP/Getty Images)
"France today faced a shock," Hollande (center) said, according to a BBC interpreter. "Today, I'm thinking about the victims." (Etienne Laurent/EPA/Landov)
People stand outside the Charlie Hebdo office after the attack. NPR's Eleanor Beardsley says it's unclear how the gunmen managed to get past extra security, which had been put in place because of previous threats. (Thibault Camus/AP)

Copyright NPR 2021.