Norway arrests suspect linked to 1982 Paris attack


Oslo (AFP)

Norwegian anti-terror police on Wednesday arrested a suspect linked to a 1982 attack in a Jewish neighbourhood in Paris that left six people dead and 22 injured, police said.

A spokesman for the PST anti-terror police said a man had been detained in the town of Skien southwest of the capital on an arrest warrant issued by the French authorities.

"A European arrest warrant has been issued by the French authorities, it will be carefully examined to see if the conditions are met," spokeswoman Annett Aamodt said .

In 2015, France requested Norway extradite Walid Abdulrahman Abu Zayed, who has lived in the country since 1991, over his suspected role in the attack.

The bombing of a Jewish restaurant in the Marais area of the French capital has been attributed to the Abu Nidal Organisation, which splintered from the militant Palestinian Fatah group.

Norwegian police did not name Abu Zayed as the man in detention, but confirmed to AFP that the arrest was in connection to the attack on the Goldenberg restaurant.

Abu Zayed, who is now in his sixties, has previously denied being involved in the attack in which two men opened fire and threw grenades into the Goldenberg restaurant.

"My husband never killed anyone. He has never been in France," his wife told AFP in 2015 in response to an international arrest warrant issued by France, which Norway did not act on at the time.

Abu Zayed, who is wanted for murder and attempted murder, could not be reached by AFP for comment.

In France, a lawyer for the victims' relatives, Romain Boulet, spoke of a "real relief" for his clients.

"This is only a first step, however. We hope that Norway will proceed with a swift extradition and that it will not protect a terrorist," he told AFP, adding they wanted a trial and "not simple hearings."

In total, French authorities have issued four arrest warrants, with two against people in Jordan, and a fourth against a suspect believed to be in the West Bank.

The man arrested in Norway is due to be brought before Norwegian courts on Thursday for a pre-trial detention hearing.