Newstalk
Newstalk

11.04 23 Mar 2018


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Updated: 16.45

Three people and a gunman have been killed during what is being treated as a terrorist attack in southern France.

Around a dozen people were also injured.

A gunman took hostages at a Super U supermarket in town of Trebes, south-east of Toulouse, before being shot dead in a police raid.

A man, who had reportedly claimed allegiance to the Islamic State group, took hostages at around 11.15am.

A source said the man "entered the Super U supermarket at around 11.15am and shots were heard."

A policeman was also shot in a separate incident.

French media reported the policeman was shot in the town of Carcassonne, while a gunman fired shots during the hostage-taking at the supermarket about 15 minutes' away.

The hostage-taker had asked for the release of Paris attacker Salah Abdeslam, according to BFMTV.

Abdeslam is the only surviving suspect of the 2015 Paris attacks.

 Image: Google Earth

French Interior Minister Gerard Collomb visited the scene and explained what happened.

"The Lieutenant-Colonel of police who was with his men voluntary substituted himself for a hostage the terrorist was holding.

"So he managed to stay with him.

"The terrorist fired, the GIGN (a tactical unit of the French National Gendarmerie) intervened and killed the terrorist".

Speaking in Brussels, French President Emmanuel Macron said he had spoken with the Minister of the Interior, and will be returning to Paris.

He tweeted that the "full solidarity and mobilisation of the services of the State" would be used.

The Irish embassy in Paris said it was aware of the incident, and was asking people concerned to contact them on +33-144-176700 or the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin on 01-408-2000.

French prosecutors are treating it as a terror attack.


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