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Explosion on the Dakar 2022: an investigation opened for attempted terrorist assassinations

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The national anti-terrorism prosecution announced that it had opened a preliminary investigation on Tuesday for “attempted assassinations in connection with a terrorist enterprise”, after “the explosion which hit the vehicle occupied by a crew of five French”, on the Dakar 2022 in Saudi Arabia.

The national anti-terrorism prosecution announced that it had opened a preliminary investigation on Tuesday for “attempted assassinations in connection with a terrorist enterprise”, after “the explosion which hit the vehicle occupied by a crew of five French”, on the Dakar 2022 in Saudi Arabia. The investigations into this explosion on December 30 in Jeddah, which “seriously injured the driver of the car”, are entrusted to the Directorate of Internal Security (DGSI), said the Pnat in a statement.

French pilot Philippe Boutron repatriated after surgery

Saudi authorities on Saturday ruled out a criminal act to explain what they called an “accident”, which seriously injured Philippe Boutron, 61, in a leg, repatriated after having been operated on in Saudi Arabia. For its part, the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs called on its nationals to be “maximum vigilant”, adding on the contrary that “the hypothesis of a criminal act” was “not ruled out” and recalling that “the terrorist threat persists (a) in Saudi Arabia “. The organization of the race had explained that a “malicious act” was not excluded.

Also president of Union Sportive Orléans Football, a third division club, Philippe Boutron was driving the vehicle at the time of the explosion in Jeddah near the hotel where its occupants had just spent the night. The crew headed for the stadium where checks were taking place on the cars scheduled to take part in the rally-raid which began two days later.

“War scenes”

The pilot Thierry Richard, 57, who was in the vehicle, spoke of “war scenes”, “very difficult” moments. According to the Bordeaux resident, six people were on board, including him in the passenger seat.

The pilot of the Sodicars team, to which the victim also belongs, told AFP that he was lifted by the blast, adding that his legs hit the dashboard and the car caught fire. Philippe Boutron received first aid on the spot, administered in particular by his co-pilot, Mayeul Barbet, after being extracted from the vehicle, according to this testimony. Asked by AFP, the Saudi authorities refused to comment, as did the director of Sodicars, Richard Gonzalez.

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