One policeman was killed and two others injured as a result of gunfire in the Champs-Élysées sector in Paris, according to the authorities.
The man who was at the origin of the shooting tried to escape on foot, and was shot, according to a spokesman of the Interior Ministry, Pierre-Henry Brandet.
The Ministry of Interior spokesman said that a car stopped at a police van and that a man came out to fire an automatic weapon on the occupants of the vehicle. He then tried to shoot other police officers while running, before being shot down.
They [the police] were deliberately targeted.
PH Brandet, spokesman for the Ministry of the Interior
Mr. Brandet asserts that the identity of the assailant has not yet been established. The prosecutor’s office said it had seized the anti-terrorism section of the case.
The Paris Prefecture of Police recommends avoiding the Champs-Élysées sector. A security perimeter was established in the 8th arrondissement. For, as stated by Brandet, “it can not be excluded that one or more accomplices may have participated …”.
A busy commercial avenue
The shooting took place around 9 pm, Paris time, near a branch of the Marks and Spencer chain. Several restaurants on this avenue that attracts many tourists have closed their doors.
The Parisian Autonomous Transportation Authority (RATP) closed subway stations in the affected area.
The Prime Minister, Bernard Cazeneuve, was to join President François Hollande at the Elysee.
Recall that the French will vote on Sunday in the first round of the presidential election.
The whole of France is under a state of emergency after being confronted, since 2015, with a wave of unprecedented jihadist attacks.
More details will follow.