Man arrested after car driven at French soldiers

A memorial to the 86 residents of the French village of Ascq murdered

French police have arrested a man who tried to run over a group of soldiers in south-eastern France.

The driver attempted to ram his vehicle into troops jogging outside their base in Varces-Allieres-et-Risset, near Grenoble, who threw themselves in a ditch to escape the auto. No one was hurt in the attempt.

The incident comes with France on edge after a jihadist rampage in the southwest last week, where a 25-year-old radicalised gunman killed four people, including a policeman who took the place of a hostage in a supermarket siege.

A state of emergency put in place just after the Paris attacks was finally lifted in October previous year, but soldiers continue to patrol major tourist sites and transport hubs under an anti-terror mission.

No injuries to the soldiers were reported, and it was not immediately known why the alleged attacker, unidentified as of Thursday afternoon, went after them during a morning jog near their base.

The soldiers dived into a ditch to avoid the oncoming vehicle in Varces-Allières-et-Risset, near Grenoble.

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The man shouted in Arabic at the soldiers before the attack, and sped off afterwards in what reports said was a stolen Peugeot 208.

The driver targeted soldiers from the 7th Mountain Battalion.

'Given the context, the incident is being taken seriously but we don't know his motivations.

Members of the 93rd mountain artillery regiment were jogging near their barracks in the alpine town of Varces-Allières-et-Risset when the man drove a stolen vehicle at them, forcing the soldiers to dive out of the way, the BBC reported. The perpetrator remains at large and a manhunt is underway.

Lakdim drove to a supermarket in the nearby town of Trèbes where he shot two more people dead and took several hostages. The gendarme was killed by the Moroccan-born assailant.

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