Schiltigheim (France) (AFP) - He had a promising graphic designer job, plans to be a wedding videographer and was a star sportsman in his French town. So how did Youssoup Nassoulkhanov end up in an Islamic State group video praising the Paris attacks?
"We talked, we joked around, he was a good kid. He had no hatred for France or the French or non-Muslims," said Yann Lymand, who worked next to Nassoulkhanov for over a year.
He says the person he knew is impossible to square with the bearded, Kalashnikov-wielding Nassoulkhanov in last week's video for the Islamic State group in Syria, praising the jihadists who killed 17 people in Paris this month.
"There will be more and more of these operations in the whole of Europe, God willing," says Nassoulkhanov in the video.
"To those brothers who can't come to Islamic State territory, do whatever you can. Kill them, slit their throats, burn their cars, burn their houses," he says.
There is a wide range of factors that can push someone into violent jihad, and two people with the same disposition can go in radically different directions.
"It's not like Youssoup didn't have anything in his life," said Lymand, back in Schiltigheim. "To see him like that in the video, it was impossible for me to believe."
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