Paris attacks at a glance: Thursday’s developments – CNN
• NEW: Following the terror attacks in Paris, the FBI is closely monitoring dozens of people they think pose the highest threat of attempting to carry out a copycat attack in the United States, according to FBI Director James Comey and Attorney General Loretta Lynch told reporters. No relationship exists between the Paris attackers and anyone in the United States, they said.
The investigation and the raids
• Hasna Ait Boulahcen was the suicide-vest-clad woman killed during Wednesday’s raid on an apartment in the Paris suburb of Saint-Denis, official sources in France told CNN. Boulahcen, 26, was a relative of Abaaoud, the sources said. Friends of her family in their hometown of Aulnay-sous-Bois, on the northeastern outskirts of Paris, said she had lived there until recently. The Paris prosecutor’s office earlier told CNN that police were searching the home of the female suicide bomber’s mother there.
• Multiple raids were conducted in Belgium in connection with Hadfi Bilal, a suicide bomber in last week’s Paris attacks, according to a statement from the Belgian federal prosecutor’s office.
• Though authorities have confirmed that Abaaoud died as a result of the police raid in the Paris suburb of Saint-Denis, they don’t yet know whether he blew himself up, the Paris prosecutor’s office said.
• Papillary prints — which include prints from fingers, palms and soles — led officials to identify Abaaoud’s remains, the French prosecutor’s office announced in a statement.
• A lawyer for Abaaoud’s father told CNN the father is “relieved” his son is dead. Attorney Nathalie Gallant said father Omar Abaaoud thinks his son was a “psychopath” and a “devil,” and he feels guilty about his son’s radicalization.
• Abaaoud was linked to at least four foiled terror attacks the spring, French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said, and had ties with several other known jihadists.
• Abaaoud used social media to try to recruit Spanish citizens, mostly women, to join ISIS in Syria, Spain’s Interior Minister Jorge Fernandez told Spanish television station, Antena 3 TV.
• A captain with Paris police’s Research and Investigation Brigade, which responded to Friday’s attack at the Bataclan Theatre, described in an NBC interview the “hell on Earth” his team encountered there. Upon taking position at the theater, he said several hundred people lay on the floor. “Tons of bloods everywhere. No sound. Nobody was screaming … and a lot of light because it was like a concert.” The people in the auditorium were lying motionless, he told NBC, “because they were afraid of the terrorist.”
• Video released by dailymail.com in London captures one of the Paris attacks at a cafe. A gunman sprays the front of the cafe and its outdoor bistro tables with bullets as glass shatters and patrons scramble to safety. The gunman approaches a woman near the front door and points an assault rifle at her. The weapon appears to jam, and the gunman walks off. The woman and another customer make a run for it.
The scene in France
• France will push the European Union to strengthen external borders before the end of the year, Cazeneuve said.
• Lawmakers approved a plan by French President Francois Hollande to extend until February 2016 the state of emergency declared the night of the Paris attacks. The bill, which gives the government sweeping powers, now goes to France’s Senate, for a Friday vote.
• A man posted a video on Facebook calling on his fellow French Muslims to hunt down the “imposters” of Islam and “protect our beautiful religion.”
• An anti-terror rally planned outside the Grand Mosque of Paris Friday has been canceled because “the security conditions necessary for the holding of a public gathering are not good enough,” Dalil Boubakeur, the mosque’s chairman, said in a statement. Earlier Thursday, Boubakeur decried what he said was ISIS’ perversion of his religion and called for military action against the group’s stronghold in Syria.
Around the globe
• U.S. President Barack Obama has warned of the long road that lies ahead in the global effort to defeat ISIS. “It’s going to be a multiyear task,” he said at a regional conference in the Philippines. “And we’re not going to be able to fully succeed in eliminating their safe havens until we have a political settlement of some sort in Syria.”
• The U.S. House of Representatives approved a measure to effectively pause the processing of Syrian refugees by insisting no refugee be admitted without certification by the Secretary of Homeland Security. Many House Democrats ignored White House pleas to oppose the bill, giving Republicans enough support to conceivably secure a veto-proof majority. It’s unclear when the Senate would take up the bill, but Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid has said his caucus will block the bill from passing in the Senate.
• An ISIS video released Wednesday warns of an impending attack on New York City. Mayor Bill de Blasio said police are “taking all necessary precautions” in areas shown in the video and throughout the city. “Stoking fear is the goal of terrorist organizations,” he said, “but New York City will not be intimidated.”
• In the latest publication of ISIS’ Dabiq magazine, the terrorist group includes a list of the latest attacks for which it claims responsibility, including the downing the Russian passenger plane in Sinai, the suicide attacks in Lebanon and the attacks in Paris.