Bodies of French school shooting victims bound for Israel

AFP , Tuesday 20 Mar 2012

The bodies of three Franco-Israeli children and a French rabbi shot in a drive-by at a Jewish school by a gunman on a motorcycle are bound for Tel Aviv today

France's President Nicolas Sarkozy (C) turns to look upwards as he arrives with his wife Carla Bruni-Sarkozy at the Notre-Dame de Nazareth synagogue in Paris March 19, 2012, to pay tribute to the four victims killed by a gunman at a Jewish school in Toulouse ( Photo: Reuters)

The bodies of three Franco-Israeli children and a French rabbi who were murdered in a French school shooting were to be flown to Israel on Tuesday, a Jewish community body said.

Teacher Jonathan Sandler, his two sons Gabriel, 4, and Arieh, 5, and a seven-year-old pupil at the Ozar Hatorah school, Myriam Monsonego, were to be brought to Paris from Toulouse before being put on a plane.

The Central Consistory, which represents Jewish communities in France, said the bodies would be carried on an El Al flight from Paris Charles de Gaulle airport at 10:00pm (2100 GMT) bound for Tel Aviv.

The Israeli embassy in Paris told AFP the plan was for all of the victims to be buried on Wednesday in Israel, as requested by the families.

France launched an unprecedented manhunt following Monday's shooting, in which a man rode up to the Jewish school in the southern city of Toulouse on a scooter, parked up and then opened fire on a crowd of pupils.

Witnesses said that Rabbi Sandler was killed outside the school as he tried to shield his two toddlers from the hail of bullets. The shooter then ran into the school grounds, grabbed Myriam and shot her through the head.

A 17-year-old was also wounded.

Anti-terrorist police believe the gunman was also responsible for two similar shootings in the same region last week in which four off-duty French paratroopers were shot, three of them fatally.

The three dead soldiers were of North African origin while the wounded one was black.

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