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Update: Standoff Continues in France; Report That New Attack Was Imminent

After a pre-dawn raid erupted into a firefight, French riot police pressed Wednesday for the surrender of a holed-up gunman who is suspected in seven killings and claiming allegiance to al-Qaida. A prosecutor said the gunman was planning to kill another soldier imminently.

After 13 hours of negotiations, one French official said hundreds of police were ready to storm the building in the southwestern city of Toulouse to end the standoff.

Three police have already been wounded trying to arrest the 24-year-old Frenchman of Algerian descent who is suspected of killing three Jewish children, a rabbi and three French paratroopers.

Prosecutor Francois Molins said the gunman, Mohamed Merah, had been to Afghanistan twice and had trained in the Pakistani militant stronghold of Waziristan. Molins said the gunman’s brother had been implicated in a network that sent militant fighters to Iraq. . .

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