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    An investigation has been ordered to determine whether the man who took hostages in a kosher food store in Paris collaborated with terrorist groups during his recent stay in Madrid

    Police Investigating Paris Hostage-Taker's Madrid Connections

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    An investigation has been ordered to determine whether the man who took hostages in a kosher food store in Paris collaborated with terrorist groups during his recent stay in Madrid, El Pais reported Thursday.

    MOSCOW, January 15 (Sputnik) The media outlet reports that Amedy Coulibaly and his wife Hayat Boumeddiene stayed in Madrid between December 31 and January 2. A Spanish high court judge ordered an investigation to determine whether there was any collaboration with terrorist organizations during their stay after receiving a report from the police.

    According to the counterterrorist investigation, Coulibaly and Boumeddiene came to the Spanish capital by car with another man who has not been identified, El Pais reported. After their stay in Madrid, Coulibaly reportedly travelled to Paris, while his wife caught a flight to Istanbul.

    "Spanish anti-terrorist officers are investigating, in cooperation with their French counterparts, the activities of Coulibaly during his stay in Madrid and trying to determine who he could have been in contact with," the Guardian reported Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia as saying. "His presence in the city suggests there is, at least, a support cell in the capital of Spain."

    AFP reports that Coulibaly was in Madrid from December 30 to January 2, accompanied by his partner Hayat Boumeddiene, who is reported by sources in Turkey to have reached Syria on January 8, where she is currently believed to be evading arrest. A third unidentified person is also a subject of the investigation, who "may have helped her reach Syria," the source in the Spanish judiciary told AFP.

    CCTV footage of Boumeddiene shows her at Istanbul Airport passport control with a North African man named Mehdi Sabri Belhouchine, according to International Business Times. On Monday, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said it was unfair to accuse Turkey of being partially responsible for the attacks in Paris, stating that 35 million tourists visit Turkey each year, and visitors are subject to checks on the basis of intelligence from the relevant country. Davutoglu added that 7,000 persons had been apprehended by Turkish authorities and prevented from entering, and 1,500-2,000 deported from the country.

    On January 8 Coulibaly shot dead policewoman Clarissa Jean-Philippe in the Parisian suburb of Montrouge, before taking several people captive in a Jewish supermarket the following day, January 9. The Islamist terrorist killed four of his hostages before being shot by police after a four hour standoff.

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    France, hostage, terrorist attack, Spain
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