April 20 (UPI) — Authorities in west Paris are on the scene of a taking pictures that left no less than two folks lifeless Thursday — the gunman and a metropolis police officer, in accordance with officers.
The gunfire began Thursday evening on the Avenue des Champs-Élysées and the realm was evacuated, authorities mentioned, and no less than one different officer was wounded.
Particulars of the taking pictures weren’t instantly clear, however witnesses mentioned they heard a burst of gunfire on the enduring Paris avenue. It wasn’t recognized whether or not any civilians had been damage.
France’s Prefecture Nationwide Police suggested folks to remain away from the realm, which is positioned on the western flank of Paris.
Witnesses mentioned the gunman used an AK-47-type rifle within the assault.
“We heard taking pictures and everybody ran in panic. Individuals have been crying,” one witness advised France’s The Native.
Thursday’s incident was the second time this yr a police officer was shot on the Champs-Élysées.
“At first we thought it was firecrackers however then we realized it was a taking pictures and everybody ran in panic. Individuals have been crying,” one witness advised French tv.
“The world was cleared actually shortly.”
The Avenue des Champs-Élysées is a well-liked purchasing and vacationer district in Paris close to the Arc de Triomphe and Eiffel Tower.
Officers weren’t instantly sure whether or not the taking pictures was terror-related.
“Our condolences from our nation to the folks of France,” U.S. President Donald Trump mentioned at a joint information convention with Italian prime minister Paolo Gentiloni Thursday.
“It’s occurring once more,” he continued. “It’s a very, very horrible factor that is happening on this planet right this moment but it surely appears like one other terrorist assault. What are you able to say? It simply by no means ends. We’ve got to be sturdy and we now have to be vigilant — and I’ve been saying it for a very long time.”
Paris has been on excessive alert for months out of concern the town might once more be focused by militants. Greater than 100 folks have been killed in a coordinated assault in November 2015. A dozen folks have been killed ten months earlier in an assault on the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo. Tuesday, two males have been arrested in Marseille on suspicion of plotting varied assaults in France.
“Should you’re in Paris, monitor native information. Champs-Elysées has been closed. Authorities are telling folks to keep away from the realm after a taking pictures,” the U.S. Division of State mentioned in a tweet.