Man responsible for France attack was 'petty criminal' with a fake gun

French president Francois Hollande said he cannot deny that this latest attack in Nice is an act of terror.

The government has confirmed that the 31-year-old man responsible was known to police as a petty criminal.

He drove a truck, loaded with explosives, into a throng of people watching a fireworks display on the promenade at 10:30 pm to celebrate Bastille Day. Eighty-four people were killed.

The man of Franco Tunisian descent and a father of three who lived in Nice, was shot dead by police.

Stephen Grootes talks to Channel France 24 correspondent Sanam Shantayie about the man who was not on the intelligence services radar.

The driver went through the crowd of families and children and even accelerated and zig zagged in an attempt to hit even more people.

Sanam Shantayie, Channel France 24 correspondent

Thousands of people started running down the road away from the promenade.

Sanam Shantayie, Channel France 24 correspondent

Shantayie says police found weapons and grenades in the bullet riddled truck, but it appears the weapon, a pistol, found on the driver, was fake.

Following the November attacks in Paris, the government has reacted swiftly.

A State of Emergency was put in place following the November Paris attacks, and that has now been extended by an additional three months.

Sanam Shantayie, Channel France 24 correspondent

Ryan Cummings, Director at Signal Risk, told Stephen Grootes that there are long and short term strategies needed for dealing with these terrorist attacks.

In the long term, one needs to question whether western policies are not leading to a proliferation of terrorism, Cummings said.

A lot of actions by western governments could possibly be fueling radicalisation and all forms of terrorist activity by these groups.

Ryan Cummings, Director at Signal Risk

In the short term, these attacks are difficult to prevent, he says.

Terrorism is evolving in many countries, while strategies are possibly not evolving as quickly.

Ryan Cummings, Director at Signal Risk

Listen to the full conversation below:


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