(France Ministry of Interior/Twitter)

ISIS, AQAP Calls for Attacks Preceded Stabbings Outside Former Charlie Hebdo Office

Two suspects have been detained in a stabbing outside of the former office of Charlie Hebdo — shortly after multiple terror groups called for fresh attacks to emulate or further the aims of the 2015 attack on the satirical magazine.

Paris police said two people were wounded and in critical condition with “not life-threatening” injuries after being stabbed on the street in front of the magazine’s old office in the city’s 11th district. The location of Charlie Hebdo’s current office is kept secret.

FRANCE 24 journalist Christophe Dansette tweeted that one of the suspects, arrested near the Place de la Bastille in eastern Paris, was “covered in blood.” French prosecutors have opened a terrorism investigation into “attempted murder in relation with a terrorist enterprise.”

FRANCE 24 reported that the victims worked at a documentary production company and were outside smoking cigarettes. The attacker did not know the victims, France counterterrorism prosecutor Jean-François Ricard said.

Fourteen suspects are currently on trial for allegedly aiding the 2015 attack, in which brothers Chérif and Saïd Kouachi killed 12 people.

One month ago, an English-language monthly magazine produced by ISIS supporters urged followers to “race” to emulate the Charlie Hebdo attack, arguing that governments aren’t doing enough to punish those viewed by the terror group as blasphemers.

The seventh issue of “The Voice of Hind,” released online by ISIS supporters in India, told Muslims that “the governments you live under are providing full support and protection to every person who attacks our beloved prophet, under the pretext of freedom of expression.” The article then called the Charlie Hebdo attack an operation “with Faith and riffles [sp]” to “wreak havoc in the broad daylight to avenge the Messenger (PBUH) for being abused by this newspaper.”

The Kouachis and “all those brothers who come out” to attack accused blasphemers are “leaving a clear path for others to follow,” the magazine stated. “Yes, my dear brothers; this is the way to defend the Messenger (PBUH), there is no other way! We cannot expect the disbelieving and apostate governments to carry out the punishment for the blasphemy prescribed by Islam.”

That punishment, the article continues, is “nothing but death,” and followers should “race to one another to carry out this obligation.”

“If we do not become forceful, then the assaults on our religion… will continue,” the text stated, calling on supporters to “take revenge on each and every one who has insulted our beloved Messenger (PBUH).”

Then two weeks ago, on Sept. 11, al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula issued a message calling on Muslims living in France to conduct attacks, referencing the Charlie Hebdo attack.

AQAP claimed the 2015 attack with a statement then to the Associated Press declaring that “the leadership of AQAP directed the operations and they have chosen their target carefully as revenge for the honor of the prophet.”

That statement included late al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden’s warnings for those the terror group considers blasphemers and vowed to keep “hitting the snake’s head … until the West retreats.”

AQAP senior cleric Sheikh Harith al-Nadhari also issued a recording denouncing the “filthy” French as “the heads of infidelity who insult the prophets,” and praised the gunmen who “taught them a lesson and the limits of freedom of speech.”

Risk Assessment and Mitigation Lessons Learned from the Charlie Hebdo Attack

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Bridget Johnson is the Managing Editor for Homeland Security Today. A veteran journalist whose news articles and analyses have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe, Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor and a foreign policy writer at The Hill. Previously she was an editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and syndicated nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. Bridget is a senior fellow specializing in terrorism analysis at the Haym Salomon Center. She is a Senior Risk Analyst for Gate 15, a private investigator and a security consultant. She is an NPR on-air contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, New York Observer, National Review Online, Politico, New York Daily News, The Jerusalem Post, The Hill, Washington Times, RealClearWorld and more, and has myriad television and radio credits including Al-Jazeera, BBC and SiriusXM.

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