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Ivory Coast: 15 people arrested in connection with Grand Bassam attack



Ivory Coast: 15 people arrested in connection with Grand Bassam attack
According to Ivory Coast state prosecutor, Richard Adou, at least 15 people have been arrested in connection with an attack claimed by al-Qaeda which claimed the lives of 19 people at a beach resort of the Grand Bassam area of the West African country this month.
Adou gave no further information on those arrested; declining to give their nationalities out of concern that their countrymen living in or visiting Ivory Coast could become target of violent reprisals.
The prosecutor also revealed that security forces are also in the hunt for Kounta Dallah- the suspected leader of the attack at the beach resort which saw armed militants shooting and killing swimmers and sunbathers before storming into several hotels rooms when they burst onto the beach in the town of Grand Bassam, 40 km (25 miles) from the commercial capital Abidjan, on March 13.

Read also:  Attack on Cote D’ Ivoire hotel leaves 5 dead

“Evidence found at the scene has allowed us to identify and trace certain individuals who participated in these acts,” Adou told a news conference.

Reporters were shown a photo of Dallah by the prosecutor that appeared to have been taken during an airport passport inspection. No other details about the suspect were made available.
“This person is directly involved in the attack, was recognised by witnesses … He was present at the scene, but left at a certain moment,” Interior Minister Hamed Bakayoko told reporters.
“Concerning him, there is no doubt. The arrests that followed are a community of individuals who were with him, who have links to him,” he added. 

Weapons, ammunition, balaclavas and vehicles believed to have been used by the attackers were being examined and a judge was preparing both domestic and international arrest warrants for other suspects.

Eleven Ivorians, including three special forces’ soldiers, died in the shooting rampage. Four French citizens were killed and other foreign victims included citizens of Germany, Lebanon, Macedonia and Nigeria.

Adou said that Ivorian authorities had received assistance from a team of French investigators, the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigations as well as law enforcement officials from Germany, Morocco and Mali.

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