Armed man killed after driving into police convoy in Paris

No bystanders injured

PARIS — An armed man was killed in Paris on Monday afternoon after he rammed a car into a police convoy on the Champs-Élysées, the French authorities said.

A convoy of vehicles belonging to the gendarmerie, one of France’s police forces, was traveling on the Champs-Élysées around 3:40 p.m. when a man drove up in a Renault Mégane and struck the lead vehicle in the convoy, said Johanna Primevert, a spokeswoman for the Paris police prefecture. The car caught on fire.

Primevert said no bystanders had been injured. Gérard Collomb, the interior minister, said the assailant had died; he did not specify the cause.

“This car contained a certain number of weapons and explosives, making it potentially possible to blow the car up,” Collomb said, but he did not provide details on what kinds of explosives or weapons were found.

Some French news outlets, quoting anonymous police officials, reported that the car contained gas canisters, several handguns and a Kalashnikov assault rifle.

“This shows, once again, that the threat level in France is extremely high,” Collomb said, adding that the government would discuss a new security bill in a cabinet meeting this week.

The bill, which had already been announced, would codify in common law some measures in the current state of emergency, such as the ability to conduct house raids or place people under house arrest without the prior authorization of a judge.

Early reports suggested that the assailant was a man in his early 30s, from the Paris suburb of Argenteuil, who had an S-file, meaning that he was one of thousands of people who have been flagged for potential terrorism-related concerns, although the government does not have enough evidence to arrest them.

Police and military officers in France have been targeted by a string of attacks in recent months and years.

In June 2016, France was horrified by the killing of a police officer and his companion in Magnanville, a small town near Paris, by a man who pledged allegiance to the Islamic State.

In February, a 29-year-old man armed with two large knives and shouting “God is great” in Arabic lunged at a military patrol near an entrance to the Louvre in Paris and wounded a soldier. The assailant was shot by another soldier.

In March, a gunman was killed at Orly Airport, south of Paris, after attacking a soldier.

In April, days before the first round of France’s presidential elections, a gunman wielding an assault rifle shot at police officers on the Champs-Élysées, killing one. The gunman was shot dead by the police as he tried to flee on foot.

This month, a man was arrested in Paris after he used a hammer to attack police officers patrolling in front of Notre-Dame Cathedral. The assailant was shot and wounded.

Categories: -News-

Leave a Reply