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Nov 17, 2014 5:51 AM

Frenchman believed among killers in IS beheadings

The Associated Press

PARIS (AP) France's top security official says a Frenchman suspected of joining fighters for the Islamic State group is believed to be among the killers in a video that showed a beheaded American aid worker and a dozen Syrian soldiers.

Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said Monday that there is a "strong presumption" that Frenchman Maxime Hauchard is among the group of Islamic extremist fighters in the video released over the weekend.

Cazeneuve said authorities are analyzing the video and have been investigating Hauchard, who is about 22 years old and from west of Paris.

French citizens make up the largest contingent of European jihadi fighters who have joined extremists in Syria and Iraq. According to the Paris prosecutor's office, about 1,100 people have been placed under surveillance, and 95 people face charges.


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