One police officer was killed and three people injured after a gunman opened fire on Champs-Elysees boulevard in Paris on Thursday night, reports CBC.
The Islamic State said they were responsible for the attack, which took place just days before France is due to go to the polls in its presidential election on April 23 (Sunday). French media reported this morning that the gunman was already known to police, having previously been the subject of an anti-terror probe.
Interior Ministry spokesman Pierre-Henry Brandet said that a man got out of his car on Thursday night and opened fire on a police bus with an automatic weapon just before 21:00 – killing an officer. He then attempted to escape on foot while shooting at other police officers, injuring two.
The assailant has been identified from papers left in his car, but his name has not yet been released by French officials. However, French media have named the man as Karim Cheurfi, 39, from the eastern Paris suburb of Chelles.
The attack took place while the 11 candidates in Sunday’s presidential election partook in a final joint TV appearance to make their case to voters. French Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said that security forces, including elite units, had been fully mobilized ahead of the election.