A man was tasered by police and shot with rubber bullets in Paris after allegedly trying to attack officers with a knife, according to reports.
Police foiled the attack after receiving a call that a man armed with a knife was knocking on his neighbour’s door in a southwestern district of the city at around 3pm local time.
A journalist at the scene, Clement Lanot, said no-one was injured and that soldiers from the Vigipirate anti-terrorist initiative arrived to secure the area.
The knifeman’s motive is unclear. It comes a day after French President Emmanuel Macron declared the country ‘under attack’ following a string of incidents feared to be terror related.
In a day of tragedy for France, three people were killed by a knifeman inside the Notre-Dame Basilica in Nice on Thursday, just as a service was starting shortly before 10am local time.
Police have identified the suspect as 21-year-old Tunisian Brahim Aouissaoui, who had arrived in Europe on a migrant boat last month, having been processed through the Italian Red Cross.
He repeatedly shouted ‘Allahu akbar’, meaning ‘God is greatest’ in Arabic, even after he was shot by police, detained and treated by paramedics before being taken to hospital.
Just over an hour after the Nice stabbing, at about 11.15am, another knifeman was shot dead by French police in the Montfavet district of Avignon, in the south-east.
He also shouted ‘Allahu Akbar’ as he threatened passers-by and police with a blade, according to reports. Around a similar time, a man was arrested in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, for attacking a guard outside the French embassy.
Then at around noon, police managed to stop a fourth attack in the north-western suburbs of Paris after a man allegedly armed with a knife told his father he wanted to ‘copy’ the Nice attack.
After visiting the scene of the tragedy in Nice, Macron pledged to double military patrols and to provide extra protection to churches and other places of worship, as well as schools.
Police said they had detained and questioned a 47-year-old man believed to have been in contact with the assailant the night before the Nice stabbings.
As mourners paid tribute to the victims outside the Notre Dame Basilica, French citizens were warned the country could be hit by more attacks Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said on Friday that the country was engaged in a ‘war against Islamist ideology’. [Metro]