New evidence suggests ISIS, which has claimed responsibility for Friday’s Paris attacks, may be making good on its pledge to hide operatives among refugees entering Europe in the aftermath of the Syrian war.
A terrorist who blew himself up Friday at the Stade de France outside Paris landed with migrants on the Greek island of Leros on October 3, where he received an emergency Syrian passport under a false name: Ahmad al Muhammad, said an unnamed French senator briefed by the French Ministry of the Interior.
The senator said the Paris attacks were highly organized and planned long ago.
The bomber was among the terrorists who killed more than 120 people in gun and bomb attacks across Paris.
The fingerprints on that passport matched those of the Stade de France bomber, the French senator told CNN.
The revelation collides with legal requirements to give asylum to refugees fleeing persecution.
He was among a group posing as refugees who arrived with no papers, the senator said. Under new emergency provisions, he was given an emergency passport. He also provided a birth date to go with his false identity, September 10, 1990, the French senator said.
The fingerprint on the passport was not in the French database, the senator said, and therefore officials believe he was among a group of refugees and migrants.
The man traveled from Greece to Macedonia, then on Serbia and Croatia, where he registered in the Opatovac refugee camp, the lawmaker said.
A Belgian official says seven people have been detained in Belgium linked to the Paris attacks.
The official, who spoke to The Associated Press in Brussels by phone, said two of the seven attackers who died in Paris on Friday night were French men living in Brussels, one of them in the neighborhood of St. Jans Molenbeek.
He spoke on condition of anonymity due to the ongoing investigation.