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Paris Cops Shot a Hammer-Wielding Man at Notre-Dame

The unidentified attacker is currently being treated in a nearby hospital, and one of the officers sustained only minor injuries.

by River Donaghey
Jun 6 2017, 6:20pm

Photo via BERTRAND GUAY/AFP/Getty Images

Paris police shot a man who attacked an officer with a hammer near the Notre-Dame cathedral on Tuesday, BBC reports.

The assailant allegedly shouted, "This is for Syria," before attacking a group of police officers from behind with a hammer. He was also carrying multiple kitchen knives, but reportedly didn't use them in the attack, the New York Times reports. During the attack, one officer shot the man in the chest, wounding him.

According to French interior minister Gérard Collomb, the attacker is believed to be an Algerian student, but police have not yet released his identity. He is currently being treated at a nearby hospital. The hammer victim only suffered mild injuries, according to CNN.

"There was a large crowd in line to go into the cathedral," a woman named Abigail told CNN, "and when the shots fired, they all started running... We took cover in a nearby store and [police] left us there for about 15 minutes before fully clearing the area."

Hundreds of Notre-Dame tourists were held inside the cathedral while police responded to the incident, and police have asked visitors to steer clear of the monument for the time being.

France has been in a continued state of emergency following the 2015 Bataclan terror attack that killed at least 130 people, as well as the truck attack in Nice last July that plowed through the Bastille Day celebrations and killed 84 people.

There have been multiple attacks on police and military at landmarks near Paris so far this year, including a knife attack at the Louvre last February and a gunman who killed a police officer and wounded two more on the Champs-Élysées in April. Cities across Europe remain on high alert following the latest spate of terrorist attacks in the UK, after a bomber killed 22 people in Manchester, and a van plowed through pedestrians killing seven on London Bridge in recent weeks.

"One sees that we have gone from a very sophisticated terrorism to a terrorism where, in the end, any tool can be used to carry out attacks," Collomb said Monday.