France suspect died after jumping out window: minister
TOULOUSE - Agence France-Presse
Members of the RAID special police forces unit prepare to intervene as they still laying siege to the apartment block where Mohamed Merah, the man suspected of a series of deadly shootings, was holed up, on March 22, 2012 in Toulouse, southwestern France. AFP photoSelf-professed Al-Qaeda militant Mohamed Merah died during a police assault on his besieged flat after jumping out the window while still shooting, Interior Minister Claude Gueant said.
Gueant told journalists that during Thursday's assault on Merah's flat in the southern French city Toulouse, police cleared rooms until only the bathroom was left.
"When a means of investigation (such as a mirror or camera) was introduced into the bathroom, the killer came out from the bathroom shooting very violently. The bursts of gunfire were frequent and hard," Gueant said.
"A RAID (special police) officer who is used to this kind of thing told me that he had never seen such a violent assault.
"RAID officers of course tried to protect themselves, to return fire, and then in the end, Mohamed Merah jumped out of the window with a gun in his hand, continuing to fire. He was found dead on the ground." Merah's flat has been besieged for over 30 hours and journalists kept at a distance. His flat is reportedly on the first floor above the ground floor.