In the year since the tragic Paris attacks that left 130 people dead and hundreds more injured, France has been the target of several terror attacks organized by the Islamic State group, also called ISIS.
The Nov. 13, 2015 attacks, later called an “act of war” by French President François Hollande, targeted the Stade de France stadium, streets that were home to popular nightspots and the Bataclan concert hall. The attacks were conducted by “three coordinated teams,” Paris’ chief prosecutor François Molins told reporters in the days afterward.
Since these attacks, France has witnessed four ISIS terror strikes so far. The deadliest was the Bastille Day attack in the town of Nice.
On July 4, Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel drove his truck through a group of people in France’s Nice city, killing 86 and injuring 303 others. The crowd was watching fireworks for France’s Bastille Day celebrations.
The 31-year-old Tunisian man was ultimately shot dead by the police. He had an automatic pistol, ammunition, a fake automatic pistol and two rifles, BBC News reported. He also had an empty grenade.
ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack through news agency Amaq. “He did the attack in response to calls to target the citizens of the coalition that is fighting the Islamic State," Amaq wrote.
France received another shock less than two weeks after the Bastille Day attack when two men slit the throat of a priest at mass in a church in Normandy. Hollande said the attack was an act of terrorism carried out by two ISIS members.
The two men stormed inside the church and took five people hostage including the priest. A nun, who was one of the hostages, said the men forced Father Jacques Hamel to his knees before killing him. They also reportedly filmed themselves preaching in Arabic by the altar.
In this case, as well, the attackers were shot dead by police. Three hostages were rescued unharmed; one was gravely injured. Hollande said the attackers had committed a “cowardly assassination” and vowed the country would battle ISIS “by all means.”
French police were targeted twice by the terrorist group this year, once in January and once in June. On the anniversary of the Charlie Hebdo killings on Jan. 7, a knife-wielding man with a belt of fake explosives was fatally shot when he entered a police station and shouted “God is great” in Arabic.
Officers found a piece of paper that had an ISIS image and a claim of responsibility penned in Arabic.
In July, a police commander was killed outside his home in northwest Paris. The man also killed the officer’s wife and held the couple’s son hostage until police officers rescued the child.
The attacker, Larossi Abballa, already had a terrorism conviction. Hollande said the attack was “incontestably a terrorist act” and said France found itself facing a terror threat “of a very large scale.”
Paris’ chief prosecutor said the couple was targeted because of their profession. The commander’s wife, Jessica Schneider, also worked at a local police station.