Said Kouachi, fellow suspect in the Charlie Hebdo massacre and brother of Cherif Kouachi, who spoke to French television. Photo by AP/Prefecture de Police de Paris

A transcript from an interview between a French TV station and one of the men suspected of killing 12 people in the attack on the office of the French magazine Charlie Hebdo on Wednesday shows the suspect claiming, before he and his brother (pictured) were killed in a raid, that his actions were in defense of the prophet Muhammad.

From inside a printing factory outside Paris, Cherif Kouachi spoke by telephone to the French network BFMTV during a seven-hour standoff with security forces on Friday. Kouachi and his brother, Said, were later killed in a raid.

Here is a partial transcript of the interview translated by NBC News as it appeared on that organization’s website:

Kouachi: We are telling you that we are the prophet’s defenders … and I, Cherif Kouachi, was sent by Yemen’s al Qaeda. OK?

Interviewer: Yes, yes.

Kouachi: So, I went there, and it was Anwar al-Awlaki who financed me.

Interviewer: And how long ago was this?

Kouachi: Before he was killed.

Interviewer: So you came back to France not long ago?

Kouachi: No, a long time ago during the secret years. Don’t worry, I know how to do things.

Interviewer: And now you are just you and your brother?

Kouachi: That’s not your business.

Interviewer: But do you have people behind you?

Kouachi: That’s not your business.

Interviewer: OK, but do you plan to kill again in the name of Allah?

Kouachi: Kill who?

Interviewer: I don’t know, I’m asking you the question.

Kouachi: Did we kill civilians during the two days that you looked for us?

Interviewer: You killed journalists.

Kouachi: But did we kill civilians? Or people during the two days that you looked for us?


Interviewer: Did you kill this morning?

Kouachi: We are not killers. We defend the prophet. We don’t kill women. We kill no one. We defend the prophet. We kill people who insult him. We don’t kill women. We are not like you. You are the ones killing women and children in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. This isn’t us. We have an honor code in Islam.

Interviewer: But you just sought revenge here. You killed 12 people.

Kouachi: Yes, because we sought revenge. You just said it because we sought revenge.

— Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.


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