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DNA tests suggest unknown Paris attacker still at large

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10:22 CET+01:00
The probe into the Paris attacks took a twist on Friday when reports claimed DNA found on the suicide belt dumped in a bin was not that of wanted fugitive Salah Abdeslam, as had been presumed.

Up until now the theory had been that the suicide belt found in a bin in the suburb of Montrouge ten days after the November 13th terror attacks belonged to wanted man Salah Abdeslam.

It was presumed that Abdeslam may have had second thoughts about playing a role in the attacks and decided to ditch his mission and flee back to Brussels.

Mobile phone data picked up Abdeslam in Chatillon, near Montrouge on the night of the attacks, before two friends arrived in a car from Brussels to take him home.

A Europe-wide manhunt has since been launched to find the man who investigators believed was one of the chief organizers of the carnage.

But reports from BFM TV in France on Friday suggested tests have confirmed that DNA samples taken from the belt do not match Abdeslam and belong to a mystery person, yet to be identified by the police.

Matches from other DNA samples taken from the same vest were made to two of the other Paris attackers who blew themselves up on the night – Brahim Abdeslam and Bilal Hadfi.

Given the mystery person's DNA was also found in one of the safe houses used by the attackers in Belgium, as well as on one of the suicide belts used one by an attacker, one theory the police are working on is that the DNA belongs to the bomb-maker.  

Whatever the person's role was it appears he or she is still on the run and police have no idea who they are.

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Nine terrorists were killed on the night of the attacks or in the raid on the apartment at Saint-Denis and two, Abdeslam and Mohamed Abrini are on the run, almost certainly with another accomplice.

Matches from other DNA samples taken from the same vest were made to two of the other Paris attackers who blew themselves up on the night – Brahim Abdeslam and Bilal Hadfi. 

Police have not yet made any official statement about the reports in the French press.

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