Paris police shoot suspected hammer attacker outside Notre Dame cathedral

Pauline Gross
June 19, 2017

Three women were arrested in September after police found a auto laden with gas cylinders abandoned near Notre Dame cathedral in what the interior ministry at the time said was a likely planned imminent attack.

In the video obtained by ABC News, the attacker lunges at a policeman with a hammer.

The man was shot by the officer twice, Fox News reports, now wounded and in custody.

Collomb said the aggressor shouted, "This is for Syria". The officer was wounded and the assailant was hospitalized, police said.

Pictures on social media from inside the cathedral showed people sitting down with their hands in the air apparently at the request of police.

POLICE shot a man who attacked an officer with a hammer outside France's Notre Dame cathedral in Paris.

He was also found to be carrying kitchen knives and had a document identifying him as an Algerian student, the authenticity of which authorities were checking, Gerard Collomb told reporters.

A police spokesperson told The Associated Press that an officer used his weapon to shoot the assailant.

French prosecutors have reportedly confirmed a counter-terrorism investigation is underway following the incident.

The Cathedral of Notre Dame of Paris, in English Our Lady of Paris, is one of the most famous of the Gothic cathedrals of the Middle Ages and is enormously popular with tourists. Last year, police foiled an attack near the site. Some said they heard "explosions" which sounded like gunshots. She said there was no panic inside the cathedral.

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Over 1,000 people were inside the cathedral at the time of the attack.

Police sources said the officer sustained minor neck injuries in the assault.

Large numbers of police cars filled the area on the Ile de Cite island in the River Seine in the center of Paris.

One of the officer's colleagues opened fire, the source added.

Police urged people to stay away from the area, writing on Twitter that an operation is under way on the square in front of the cathedral.

A different police officer shot and wounded the attacker, who is now in the hospital, officials said.

"Everyone started fleeing from the cathedral, and police surrounded nearly immediately".

Tourists were locked inside the church about 4.30 Tuesday afternoon and hundreds of others were evacuated from the esplanade as police responded to the incident.

Earlier today, government spokesman Christophe Castaner had said the incident was an "isolated act" and the attacker "never showed any sign of radicalisation".

Other reports by GizPress

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