Louvre Museum Reopens as Egypt Identifies Machete Attacker | NBC Southern California
National & International News
The day’s top national and international news

Louvre Museum Reopens as Egypt Identifies Machete Attacker

With the spate of attacks on the country in the last couple of years many permanent residents have become resilient, even blasé

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    AP Photo/Thibault Camus
    Police officers take position outside the Louvre museum in Paris, Friday, Feb. 3, 2017.

    The Louvre in Paris reopened to the public Saturday morning, less than 24-hours after a machete-wielding assailant shouting "Allahu Akbar!" was shot by soldiers.

    In drizzly weather, tourists filed by armed police and soldiers outside the central Paris museum, which had been closed immediately after Friday's attack.

    The attacker was shot four times after slightly injuring a soldier patrolling the underground mall, but the attacker's injuries are no longer life-threatening, according to the Paris prosecutor's office.

    An Egyptian interior ministry official confirmed to The Associated Press Saturday the identity of the attacker as Egyptian-born Abdullah Reda Refaie al-Hamahmy, 28. The official said the initial investigation found no record of political activism, criminal activity or membership of any militant groups at home.

    Heavy Metal Fans Decry Cancelation of Band's Oakland Gig

    [NATL-BAY] 'Nobody's a Nazi Here': Heavy Metal Fans Decry Cancelation of Band's Oakland Gig
    A Swedish heavy metal band scheduled to rock the Metro Operahouse in Oakland Saturday night didn't even see the stage. Marianne Favro reports.
    (Published 5 hours ago)

    The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to brief the media. French authorities are not "at this stage" naming the suspect.

    On the Twitter account of an "Abdallah El-Hamahmy," tweets about a trip from Dubai to Paris were posted on Jan. 26. In the profile photo, Hamahmy is seen smiling and leaning calmly against a wall in a blue and white sports jacket.

    In another tweet on the account written in Arabic, Hamahmy went on an angry tirade ahead of the Louvre attack, posting: "No negotiation, no compromise, no letting up, certainly no climb down, relentless war."

    In an interview with the Dubai-based news channel al-Hadath aired Saturday, Hamahmy's father, Reda Refae al-Hamahmy, said he was shocked to learn of his son's alleged involvement.

    Trump Holds Campaign-Style Rally in Florida

    [NATL] Trump Holds Campaign-Style Rally in Florida
    President Donald Trump held a campaign-style rally in Melbourne, Florida, Saturday evening. Thousands of the president's supporters attended the rally, which was held in a hangar at the Orlando-Melbourne International Airport. The president once again slammed the media for telling so-called lies about his administration. The president also told supporters that his administration is running "smoothly."
    (Published 6 hours ago)

    "All I want is to know the truth and find out whether he is dead or alive," the father said. "I am desperate to know whether he is dead or alive."

    "This is all a scenario made up by the French government to justify the soldiers opening fire," added the father. He denied that his son was radical or a member of any militant groups. "He is a very normal young man," he said.

    Louvre visitors expressed mixed feelings Saturday on the incident with some tourists planning to leave Paris earlier than planned.

    "We heard on the news that a terrorist attack took place... We stayed at the hotel and we're thinking about cutting our vacation in Paris short," said Lucia Reveron from Argentina.

    Sinkhole Swallows Two Cars in Studio City

    [NATL-LA] Sinkhole Swallows Two Cars in Studio City
    Two cars fell into a sinkhole in Studio City. Beverly White reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 17, 2017.
    (Published Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017)

    Others were stoic and felt safe because of the heightened security presence.

    "I went around yesterday, in the evening, and security was everywhere. Even now when we arrived (at the Louvre) we were checked and it's secure. I don't feel any threats," said Kurt Vellafonde from Malta.

    With the spate of attacks on the country in the last couple of years many permanent residents have become resilient, even blasé.

    "There have been very good security measures taken, and it does not scare me at all," said Regine Dechivre, laughing.

    US 'Strongly Supports' NATO: Pence

    [NATL] In Europe, Pence Vows US Will 'Hold Russia Accountable'
    Vice President Mike Pence vowed Saturday that the United States will "hold Russia accountable" even as President Donald Trump searches for new common ground with Moscow at the start of his presidency.
    (Published Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017)

    "It's the phenomena of a person a little bit disturbed. The investigation will tell us what exactly happened," she added.

    The suspect's father said Hamahmy is married with a 7-month-old child, and in his last contact with the family said he intended to tour the city's sites before leaving France. He sent his father a photo of himself with the Eiffel tower in the background shortly before the incident.

    Hamahmy's brother Ahmed, who works at the Health Ministry in Dubai, was interrogated for several hours by security officials in the United Arab Emirates, the father said. In Egypt, several officers from the domestic security agency visited the family home in the Nile Delta on Friday night to question family members.

    The United Arab Emirates condemned the attack after a French official said the suspect was believed to have been living in the UAE.

    Nice Catch! Skydiving Instructor Saves Toddler

    [NATL] Nice Catch! Skydiving Instructor Saves Toddler
    Jesse "Tex" Leos knew he'd saved the day just moments after he caught a falling child while on the job at Houston's iFly indoor skydiving facility.
    (Published Friday, Feb. 17, 2017)

    UAE officials offered no comment Saturday about his possible connection to the country.

    The country, which includes the Mideast commercial hub of Dubai, is a major destination for guest workers from Egypt and numerous other countries. Foreign residents outnumber native Emiratis roughly four to one.

    "The UAE, while strongly condemning this hideous crime, affirms its full solidarity with the friendly French Republic in these circumstances and its support for whatever measures France may take to preserve its security and safety of its citizens and residents," the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation said in a statement.

    France is working with the Emirates to build a branch of the Louvre in the federal capital, Abu Dhabi. The project has been repeatedly delayed and is now expected to open later this year.

    Driving Through Flood Waters: Surviving the Danger

    [NATL]Driving Through Flood Waters: Surviving the Danger
    Flash floods are the number one cause of weather-related deaths in the United States. Learn what you should do if you are caught in the middle of a flash flood.
    (Published Friday, Feb. 17, 2017)