PARIS (Reuters) – A woman hunted by French police as a suspect in the attacks on a satirical paper and Jewish supermarket in Paris left France several day before the killings and is believed to be in Syria, Turkish and French sources said on Saturday.
After killing the gunmen behind the worst assault in France for decades, French police launched in an intensive search for Hayat Bou-meddiene, the 26-year-old partner of one of the attackers, describing her as “armed and dangerous”.
But a source familiar with the situation said that Boumeddiene left France last week and travelled to Syria via Turkey. A senior Turkish official corroborated that account, saying she passed through Istanbul on January 2.
Security forces remained on high alert before a march on Sunday which will bring together European leaders in a show of solidarity for the 17 victims killed in three days of violence that began with an attack on the Charlie Hebdo weekly on Wednesday and ended with Friday’s dual sieges at a print works outside Paris and a kosher supermarket in the city.
French security forces shot dead the two brothers behind the Hebdo killings after they took refuge in the print works.
They also killed an associate – Boumeddiene’s partner – who planted explosives at the Paris deli in a siege that claimed the lives of four hostages.