Paris police shot on Champs-Elysees; IS group claims attack


A police officer was killed and one person was wounded in a shooting that took place at Paris's Champs Elysees on Thursday. Police quickly blocked access to the crowded thoroughfare, lined with restaurants and high-end stores, as a helicopter hovered overhead.

"We shall be of the utmost vigilance, especially in relation to the election", said President Hollande, who is not himself running for re-election.

The attack came only days before the start of a presidential vote that could reverberate across Europe, and as the 11 candidates were having their final quasi-debate on the France 2 television network.

The attack overshadowed the last day of campaigning for Sunday's presidential election first round, bringing raw issues surrounding Islamist militancy to the fore. Those whose interviews were still being broadcast took the opportunity to speak about their security proposals.

Authorities are trying to determine whether "one or more people" might have helped the attacker, Brandet said.

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Steve White, chairman of the Police Federation of England and Wales, said: "Once again the police family is in mourning and it serves to underline how fearless officers are putting their life on the line day in and day out to protect the public".

While in detention, Cheurfi had also shot and wounded a prison officer after seizing his gun. The shooter opened fire with an automatic weapon on a police vehicle on the world-famous boulevard at around 9:00 pm (local time) yesterday, prompting tourists and visitors to run for their lives. The gunman was killed by police. They believe there was just one attacker, and the danger is likely over, the source said. "Some were crying. There were tens, maybe even hundreds of them".

France has been in a state of emergency since a spate of terror attacks hit the country in 2015. Authorities have been warning for months that despite the lack of any large-scale attacks, the threat has not abated.

The dead officer was 30, Paris Prosecutor Francois Molins said.

"Again, it's happening, it seems...." ISIS described the shootings as an attack "in the heart of Paris". Weapons, ammunition and the highly volatile explosive TATP, or triacetone triperoxide, was found in one of the apartments used by the two men.

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The incident follows two recent attacks on soldiers providing security at prominent locations around Paris - one at the Louvre museum in February and one at Orly airport in March.

BFMTV also reports another police officer was seriously injured and an unidentified man was hit by "cross-fire" in the the Champs-Elysées area.

He was also there a year later when the venue reopened with a concert by Sting, saying how happy he was to be "here to defend our civic values". The fatal attack on Thursday night was carried out days before presidential elections, which will be held on April 23. "It is a very, very bad thing that's going on in the world today", Trump told reporters in a joint press conference with visiting Italian Prime Minister Palo Gentiloni. "But it looks like another terrorist attack. It just never ends", he said.

The Islamic State identified the attacker as Abu Yusuf al-Beljiki through its Amaq news agency, according to SITE Intel Group, a US -based organization that monitors terrorists' activity online.

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