After a Paris gunman opened fire, three people were killed and three more injured.
According to the French prosecutor’s office, a man aged 69 was arrested in connection to the shooting at a Kurdish cultural center.
Following the attack, the French government requested that police strengthen the security of Kurdish communities in the country.
Protesters also clashed this afternoon with French police at a demonstration close to the Rue d’Enghien shooting scene.
According to the prosecutor’s office, the suspect had a previous police record that included an arrest for attacking migrants in tents one year ago. Investigators will then examine the possibility of a racist element behind the attack.
Alexandra Cordebard, the district mayor, said that the man sustained injuries to his face during the incident.
The Kurdish Community Centre lawyer stated that all three victims were from the Kurdish Community Centre.
Suspect is a French national who ‘acted alone’
Gerald Darmanin, French interior minister, said that the suspect was French and knew by authorities. However, this was not in the context political extremism and the secret service.
He stated that the exact motives of the attacker were not known and that he had acted alone.
According to Ms Cordebard, the shooting took place at noon local time at a Kurdish cultural center and a nearby restaurant and hairdresser.
President Emmanuel Macron tweeted “The Kurds in France were the victim of a heinous attack at the heart of Paris.”
“Thoughts to all the victims, the people struggling to survive, their families, and loved ones. Recognize our law enforcement officers for their courage & composure.
Officers seize control of
Laure Beccuau, Paris prosecutor, stated that three of the victims had died in the shooting. One is currently in critical condition while two other victims are being treated in hospital for less serious injuries.
The area was surrounded by shops and restaurants, so police officers urged residents to avoid the area.
Prosecutors for antiterrorism said that they are currently investigating the shooting, but have not yet indicated any terrorist motive.
Investigation into motives of gunman
According to one witness, seven to eight shots were fired, causing chaos on the streets.
Shortly after the incident Mr Darmanin stated that he would travel by train to Paris to see the “dramatic” shooting scene. He also confirmed that the suspect was already in police custody.
Ms Cordebard stated that an investigation is ongoing into the motives behind the gunman. She also said that the incident was “terrible drama”.
France was the victim of a string of terrorist attacks in 2015 and 2016. It remains alert for any terror-related violence.
According to the Paris prosecutor, an investigation was opened into murders, manslaughter, and aggravated violence.
The report stated that the suspect attacker was detained for an attack using a sword on a Parisian migrant camp.
Investigated for a crime racially motivated.
James Cleverly, the UK’s Foreign Secretary, tweeted about the “tragic” news in Paris and stated that the UK was ready to help in any way it could.