Seven Detained after Knife Attack near Ex-Charlie Hebdo Offices
Seven people have been detained in connection with an attack outside the former offices of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in Paris, officials say.
A man armed with a meat cleaver wounded two people in the attack on Friday.
The main suspect, identified as an 18-year-old man of Pakistani origin, was arrested near the scene. Police said six others were in custody and being questioned.
The attack is being treated as a terrorist incident.
Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said it was “clearly an act of Islamist terrorism”. He said police had underestimated the threat level in the area.
The attack came as a high-profile trial was under way of 14 people accused of helping two jihadists carry out the 2015 attack on Charlie Hebdo, in which 12 people were killed.
Charlie Hebdo vacated its offices after the 2015 attack, and the building is now used by a television production company.
The two victims of Friday’s attack have not been officially named but police said they were a man and woman who worked at the production company.
Prime Minister Jean Castex told reporters at the scene – near Boulevard Richard-Lenoir – that their lives were not in danger.
Charlie Hebdo is now run from a secret location.
In an interview with state broadcaster France 2 late on Friday, Mr Darmanin described the stabbing as “a new bloody attack against our country, against journalists”.
“It’s the street where Charlie Hebdo used to be. This is the way the Islamist terrorists operate,” the interior minister said.
He said he had ordered security to be stepped up around synagogues this weekend for Yom Kippur, the holiest day in the Jewish calendar.
The main suspect has not been named, but Mr Darmanin said he arrived in the country three years ago “as an isolated minor” of Pakistani nationality.
The minister added that the suspect was not known for being radicalised, but had a previous arrest for carrying a screwdriver – and gave no details.