Islamic Fanatic Dies in Shootout With French Cops
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The suspect in a radical Islam-linked killing spree in southern France was killed Thursday after police raided his apartment to end a 32-hour standoff, the French interior minister said.

Mohamed Merah, who holed up in an apartment in the southern city of Toulouse, was found in the apartment's bathroom and exchanged fire with police, the minister said. He apparently was shot in the head as he jumped out of a window.

"The killer came out of the bathroom, firing with extreme violence," Claude Gueant, the interior minister, said, adding that the RAID squad had "never seen an assault like it."

"Mohamed Merah jumped out the window, gun in hand, continuing to fire. He was found dead on the ground," Gueant said.

Gueant earlier said police wanted to capture Merah alive. Authorities say Merah has boasted about carrying out the shootings of three Jewish schoolchildren, a rabbi, and three French paratroopers in three separate incidents over the last two weeks. They are believed to be the first incidents of killings inspired by Islamic radical motives in France in more than a decade.

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