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Wednesday 20 June 2012

Toulouse Gunman: Schizophrenic or Islamist?

A gunman reported to have taken four hostages in a Toulouse bank today is claiming to be a member of al-qaeda, whereas the local authorities claim that he is suffering from "schizophrenia." The Daily Telegraph reports that three gunshots have been heard, but thankfully there has been no news of injuries or fatalities.

The gunman himself - "Boumaza" - claims that he has taken the hostages for "religious" rather than financial reasons, so it can only be hoped that French police manage to bring this situation to a swift and safe conclusion, given the favoured Islamic method of executing hostages. One hostage was released earlier this afternoon.  At the time of writing, Boumaza is not reported to have made any specific demands, which perhaps lends credence to the official line that he is suffering from schizophrenia. His sister, who is helping police with negotiations, says that her brother reacted very negatively to being taken into social care as a child, becoming angry with and fearful of the outside world.

According to, the gunman has been arrested after an exchange of fire during which he was wounded. None of the hostages are said to have been harmed. A video report from the scene can be viewed below.

Police in Toulouse


  1. Durotrigan. Your headline says 'Schizophrenic or Islamist?'

    I am now very confused. Apparently there can be no such thing as a 'Schizophrenic Muslim'! Is going to the mosque regularly and reading the Koran a guaranteed cure for being schizophrenic. I can understand why psychiatrists do not tell their patients about this 'cure' as it would put psychiatrists out of work.

    Ivan Winters
    Democratic Nationalist

    1. Well noted Ivan! Don't tell the psychiatric profession! Naturally, the heading is a little ambiguous, but I was of course wishing to highlight the contrast between the official line being peddled that he had undertaken this action owing to his mental illness (schizophrenia), and that of the hostage-taker, who claimed to be acting in this fashion because of his Islamist beliefs. Jokes aside, schizophrenia is a very nasty disease and no laughing matter for its sufferers.


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