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Suspected Louvre attacker identified as Egyptian national

By Amy R. Connolly
Suspected Louvre attacker identified as Egyptian national
Security forces keep vigil in front of the Louvre Museum in Paris, France, on February 3, 2017 which was closed following a terror attack. The area was sealed off after an assaillant was shot and wounded after he attacked soldiers on patrol in the Louvre's underground mall. Photo by Maya Vidon-White/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 4 (UPI) -- The Louvre in Paris reopened Saturday as police conducted raids across the city some 24 hours after a machete-wielding man attempted to attack French soldiers at the museum.

Police identified the attacker as Abdullah Reda Refaei al-Hamamy, a 29-year-old Egyptian man who traveled to Paris from Dubai on a tourist visa on Jan. 26. He is believed to live in the United Arab Emirates.

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Paris prosecutor Francois Molins said a raid was carried out at a Paris building. Investigators found items that included an Egyptian passport.

"The investigation which has just been launched is ongoing and will continue both inside and outside France in the context of international crime cooperation to ascertain the journey the perpetrator took and his motives, but also to find out if he acted alone, spontaneously, or on the contrary if he was following instructions,'' Molins said.

Police said the attacker, holding two 16-inch machetes, lunged at four French soldiers while shouting "Allahu Akbar", which means "God is greatest" in Arabic. One of the troops opened fire on the man, hitting him in the stomach. Officials said the man is critically injured. The soldiers were not seriously injured.

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"The attacker fell to the ground, seriously wounded. He has been taken to hospital and is fighting for his life," Molins said.

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