Thursday, January 8, 2015

Breaking News - New Police killing rocks France - lone gunman kills policewoman and injures others

  • 3 minutes ago
  • From the sectionEurope
Rescue service workers and firefighters evacuate an injured person on a stretcher near the site of a shooting in Montrouge, south of Paris, 8 January
A man was also seriously injured in the shooting

A gunman has killed a policewoman in Paris, a day after suspected Islamists killed 12 people at the office of a satirical magazine.

A second person was seriously injured in the attack in the southern suburb of Montrouge, after which the gunman fled.

It is unclear of the incident is related to the Charlie Hebdo massacre, which traumatised France.

Police have made seven arrests in the hunt for two brothers, the main suspects,. A third has surrendered.

Arrest warrants were issued for Cherif and Said Kouachi, said to be "armed and dangerous". France has declared national mourning for the victims of the Charlie Hebdo attack.

A minute's silence will be observed at midday (11:00 GMT) across the country and the bells of Notre Dame cathedral in the capital will toll.


The victims

Five of the victims known to have died in the attack, including deputy chief editor Bernard Maris, Georges Wolinsky, Jean Cabut, Stephane Charbonnier and Bernard Verlhac.
Those killed (from left) include economist Bernard Maris, prominent cartoonists Wolinski and Cabu, Charlie Hebdo editor Stephane Charbonnier and cartoonist Bernard Verlhac
  • Charlie Hebdo editor and cartoonist Stephane "Charb" Charbonnier, 47, who had been living under police protection since receiving death threats
  • Cartoonists Jean "Cabu" Cabut, 76, Bernard "Tignous" Verlhac, 57, Georges Wolinski, 80, and Philippe Honore, 73
  • Economist and regular magazine columnist Bernard Maris, 68, known to readers as Uncle Bernard
  • Mustapha Ourrad, proof-reader
  • Elsa Cayat, psychoanalyst and columnist, the only woman killed
  • Michel Renaud, who was visiting from the city of Clermont-Ferrand
  • Frederic Boisseau, 42, caretaker, who was in the reception area at the time of the attack
  • Police officers Franck Brinsolaro, who acted as Charb's bodyguard, and Ahmed Merabet, 42, who was shot dead while on the ground

Source: Le Monde newspaper and other French media

Obituary: Defiant editor

Live updates


French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve warned against jumping to conclusions after the pre-dawn shooting in Montrouge.

The gunman was armed with a machine-gun and a pistol and wore a bullet-proof jacket, police sources told AFP news agency.

A local resident, Ahmed Sassi, described a "scene of panic". He said he had seen a police officer standing and than a man dressed in dark clothes who ran up and shot the officer "at point black range".

"I saw the officer fall and a colleague call for help," Mr Sassi said.

Overnight, seven people believed to be connected to the two main suspects in the Charlie Hebdo attack were detained in the towns of Reims and Charleville-Mezieres, as well as in the Paris area.

Cherif Kouachi was sentenced in 2008 to three years in prison for belonging to a Paris-based group sending jihadist fighters to Iraq.

A third suspect, 18-year-old Hamyd Mourad handed himself in to police in Charleville-Mezieres. He reportedly surrendered after hearing his name on the news.

Paris attack - 8 Jan
Police officers near the site of a shooting in Montrouge, south of Paris, 8 January
Police officers assisted a woman at the scene of the shooting in Montrouge
Armed police in Reims, northern France, early 8 January
Armed police deployed in Reims overnight
The French flag flies at half-mast over the Elysee Palace in Paris, 8 January
The French flag is flying at half-mast over the Elysee Palace in Paris
French President Francois Hollande presides over an emergency cabinet meeting in Paris, 8 January
French President Francois Hollande presided over an emergency cabinet meeting in Paris on Thursday
AFP staff hold up "I am Charlie" placards at the French news agency's Hong Kong office, 8 January
AFP staff held up "I am Charlie" placards at the French news agency's Hong Kong office
People at a vigil for Charlie Hebdo victims in Melbourne, Australia
A vigil for Charlie Hebdo victims was being held in Melbourne, Australia, on Thursday

'We killed Charlie Hebdo'

Paris has been placed on the highest terror alert and extra troops have been deployed to guard media offices, places of worship, transport and other sensitive areas.

Eight journalists - including the magazine's editor - died along with a caretaker and a visitor when masked men armed with assault rifles stormed the Charlie Hebdo offices during an editorial meeting. Eleven people were also wounded, some seriously.

Media captionPresident Hollande has described the dead as heroes, as Gavin Hewitt reports.

Two policemen were killed on the street outside as the gunmen made their escape by car.

The magazine's office was firebombed in 2011. It had angered some Muslims by printing cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad as part of its irreverent take on news and current affairs.

Witnesses say the gunmen shouted "we have avenged the Prophet Muhammad" and "we killed Charlie Hebdo", as well as "God is Great" in Arabic.

The attackers fled to northern Paris before abandoning their car and hijacking a second one, police say.

Pencil tributes

Vigils were held through the night in Paris and cities worldwide in tribute to the dead. many demonstrators held up placards reading "Je suis Charlie" (I am Charlie) in solidarity with the victims.

Media captionMany cartoonists have been using the "Je suis Charlie" slogan in drawings to commemorate the attack

President Hollande said the country's tradition of free speech had been attacked and called on all French people to stand together.

"Today the French Republic as a whole was the target," he said in a televised speech.

Piles of pens - symbolising freedom of expression - and candles were laid across the Place de la Republique square in Paris where thousands of people had gathered.

Cartoon tributes are circulating on social media, sending out the message of press freedom. One Dutch cartoon plays on 9/11 Twin Towers imagery, showing a plane flying towards two upright pencils.

Thursday's national day of mourning is only the fifth held in France in the past 50 years.


National Days of Mourning in France

  • 12 November 1970 - Death of former President Charles de Gaulle
  • 6 April 1974 - Death of President Georges Pompidou
  • 11 January 1996 - Death of former President Francois Mitterrand
  • 14 September 2001 - 9/11 attacks on New York and Washington
  • 3 April 2005 - Death of Pope John Paul II

Charlie Hebdo attack sequence

Map of gun attack in Paris

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