Neighbours pay tribute to 12-year-old girl murdered in Paris, Latest World News - The New Paper

Neighbours pay tribute to 12-year-old girl murdered in Paris

PARIS - Shocked neighbours laid flowers and candles on Tuesday in tribute to a 12-year-old girl who was murdered in Paris, a killing which some opposition parties have seized on to call for tougher immigration policies.

The Paris prosecutor’s office said the girl disappeared on Friday.

Her body was discovered later that evening in a plastic trunk outside her building in the 19th arrondissement of the French capital.

She had suffered bruises and cuts and died asphyxiated, the prosecutors said in a statement.

The main suspect, a 24-year old woman, was seen on CCTV exiting the building in the afternoon.

She was carrying heavy luggage, including the trunk in which the victim was found.

“It’s unbearable,” said a neighbour who declined to give her name. “We’ve been living in this neighbourhood for years and we’ve just come here to give support to the family, in leaving a bouquet, because like many people, this breaks our hearts.”

Another neighbour said: “Twelve-years-old... poor girl ... it doesn’t make any sense.”

French President Emmanuel Macron met with the girl’s parents.

“He offered them his condolences and assured them of all his solidarity and support in the ordeal they are going through and which upsets us all,” his office said.

As authorities confirmed reports that the suspect was an illegal immigrant, the far-right and some in the conservatives’ ranks said this showed failings in the government’s law and order policies.

“This murder should not have happened. The assassin should not have been in France,” Olivier Marleix, president of the conservative Les Republicains group in the National Assembly, told Reuters. “There is a very deep emotion in our country.”

“Too many crimes are being committed by clandestine immigrants one has not been able or willing to deport,” French far-right leader Marine Le Pen said in parliament. Prime Minister Elizabeth Borne asked her to “show some decency”.

Lawyer Alexandre Silva, representing the suspect, told BFM TV that he could not comment on the case.

Newspapers, citing police and judicial sources, said the suspect was Algerian. - REUTERS