MOSCOW, RUSSIA – Russia’s strongman Vladimir Putin isn’t horsing around when it comes to ISIS.
He’s putting a $50-million bounty on the terrorists who planted the bomb that blew up the Russian jetliner over the Sinai Peninsula last month, killing all 224 passengers and crew.
Putin put out the reward after the head of Russia’s state security service said traces of foreign-made explosives turned up on plane fragments and passenger belongings.
“We need to know all the perpetrators all by name,” he said. “We will search for them everywhere, wherever they are hiding. We will find them in any spot on the planet and punish them."
Putin’s announcement came four days after ISIS gunmen killed 129 people in coordinated attacks across Paris. Seven of the killers blew themselves up.
Meantime, police in Paris continue to tracking down leads. Heavily armed police converged on a car with Belgium plates parked along a city street.
That’s a concern because the attackers rented their cars in Belgium.
French investigators have linked the attackers to ISIS leaders in Syria, specifically Abdelhamid Abaaoud, who they call the mastermind. He’s a Belgian citizen with direct ties to ISIS big guy Abu Bakr Al “Big Daddy” Baghdadi.
Overnight, police carried out 128 raids, and the government has mobilized 115,000 law enforcement officials to help.
Still on the run is the person believed to be the eighth gunman. He’s Salah Abdeslam, a 26-year-old French citizen.
Reports say German police arrested five suspects in a border town near Belgium and the Netherlands. They made the arrests on a tip that Abdeslam could be in the area.
No word yet if those arrests were responsible for police in Hannover evacuating a stadium and canceling the Netherlands-Germany soccer game. They say they uncovered serious plans for explosions.
German chancellor Angela Merkel was scheduled to attend.
And now, word out of Tourcoing in northern France of the cancelation of the annual cartoon festival, again.
The city also canceled it in January after the ISIS terror attack on the satirical publication Charlie Hebdo. A lesson that free expression is only free when it can be expressed.