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Paris attacks: Police hunt for grocery shop gunman's girlfriend Hayat Boumeddiene

LIZZIE DEARDEN



Police are still hunting the girlfriend of Amedy Coulibaly after the gunman was killed during the violent end of the siege of a Jewish grocery shop in Paris, in which he killed four hostages.


The whereabouts of Hayat Boumeddiene are unknown after police named her as an "armed and dangerous" suspect. She was believed to be Coulibaly's accomplice during the shooting of a female police officer on Thursday.

Boumeddiene is believed to be of Algerian descent but changed her name to make it appear more French and reportedly worked as a cashier before being radicalised.


The 26-year-old is believed to have been in a relationship with Amedy Coulibaly since 2010She and Coulibaly are believed to have married in a religious ceremony in 2009, which is not recognised in French law.

It has emerged that the pair had exchanged about 500 phone calls with the companion of one of the Kouachi brothers during 2014.

The attack on the supermarket was carefully co-ordinated with the Charlie Hebdo massacre and the suspects' subsequent escape, police said.


French police assist a woman after Coulibaly shot a police officer in the street of MontrougeThe 26-year-old is believed to have been in a relationship with Coulibaly since 2010 and reportedly lived in his apartment while he was in prison for his part in a plot to help Paris metro bomber Smain Ait Ali Belkacem escape.

During that time, he is believed to have met Cherif Kouachi. Both men and possibly Boumeddiene were avid followers of extremist Djamel Beghal.
According to Le Monde, Boumeddiene said she and Coulibaly practised firing crossbows together in the countryside while on holiday visiting Beghal, who claims to have met Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan to plan a suicide bombing.

The newspaper published a series of 2010 pictures showing her pointing the weapon at a camera while wearing a full-face veil, which is banned in France.


Hayat Boumeddiene with Amedy Coulibaly in Cantal, France, in 2010.She claimed they had crossbow trainingThe convicted terrorist, who was once based at London’s Finsbury Park mosque, was jailed for plotting to bomb the American embassy in Paris and mentored Coulibaly and Cherif Kouachi, according to Le Monde.

He allegedly set up a suspected jihadist training camp in Cantal, a mountainous area of central France, where he was visited by Boumeddiene, Coulibaly and others.


In pictures: Kosher grocery attack in Paris



Boumeddiene was previously interviewed by French anti-terror police in 2010, it was reported, but it was unclear whether any action was taken against her.

During interrogation, she reportedly said she was inspired by her boyfriend and radicals she lived with to "read a lot of books on religion".

"When I saw the massacre of the innocents in Palestine, in Iraq, in Chechnya, in Afghanistan or anywhere the Americans sent their bombers, all that…well, who are the terrorists?" she said,according to the Daily Mail.

After her lover's release from prison, the southern Paris suburb of Bagneux, where neighbours knew them as a quiet, religious and "normal" couple.

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