A French teacher who claimed to have been attacked by a masked man who yelled support for ISIS has been deemed a liar. An all out manhunt had already begun by the French police to locate the attacker by the time the teacher’s story was learned to be a hoax. New information is showing that the man was trying to get another job out of the fake ISIS attack.
The French media had originally reported that a preschool teacher had been stabbed by a man wielding a box cutter and scissors a little before the teacher’s classes were due to start and no one else had been around. The “victim” had only been identified as a 45-year-old male and reportedly had been knifed several times during the alleged attack and even had his throat cut. The teacher worked at Jean Perrin Aubervillier primary school in Seine-Saint-Denis, which is near the Paris terror siege attack.
The French authorities in Aubervillier announced on Monday that the teacher had admitted that his tale of the attack had all been lies. The New York Times reported that an official, who declined to be identified as he was not to be speaking to reporters, had given motive to the teacher’s lies about an ISIS attack. The teacher wanted another job.
“[It] was a fake attempt, done so that he could have himself transferred.”
It is now known that the teacher stabbed himself in the side and neck. He was described as a well-appreciated teacher with over 20 years of experience.
The French teacher initially advised that the man who attacked him had been wearing a balaclava and gloves when he attacked. The teacher’s lies went on to state that the man reportedly cried out ISIS support, yelling, “This is Da’esh, this is a warning.” The term Da’esh is used by Arabic nations to describe the Islamic State terror group. Roughly translated, it means “to crush underfoot.” The police took the attack quite seriously and began treating it as an “assassination attempt in relation to a terrorist organisation.”
A spokeswoman for the Paris prosecutor’s office, Agnès Thibault-Lecuivre, had relayed that the teacher’s injuries were not life threatening, but he had still been taken to the hospital. The attacker had allegedly fled after the stabbing. A preliminary investigation had opened into attempted murder on the 45-year-old teacher when the manhunt began in the northern suburb.
The lies the French teacher told were taken seriously, as Paris remains under a state of emergency following the November 13 attacks by the radical Islamic State. The attack left 130 persons dead and over 350 wounded. The attack had been a coordinated one, with several teams of gunmen and suicide bombers at different locations. Islamic State claimed all responsibility for the assaults.
Previous attacks in January of this year actually led to strict security measures being implemented at French schools. According to ABC News, all school doors were to remain locked during the day, and all visitors had their identity checked and they also conducted bag searches periodically. Families who were picking up or dropping off any students were not to be allowed to linger near the entrance to the schools, nor were children allowed to wait outside for the school doors to open.
The preschool had been closed as authorities responded to the lies of the French teacher, but the French education minister, Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, said that it will be reopened Tuesday. Assurances were made that the government would continue to improve the security measures at schools.
[Photo Courtesy of Michel Euler/AP Photo]