PARIS (RWB) – A tragic and fatal shooting took place today in Paris, France. Here are 10 facts of the latest attack on French soil:
1. Suspect Came out of Car and Shot
The attacker jumped out of the car he was driving and began to shoot his gun at a targeted group of people (read more below).
2. Targeted Police Officers
The attacker specifically targeted the police in his shooting. He first aimed at a group of policemen and then proceeded to shoot at a police van.
This attack on police comes at a time when more officers have been deployed on the streets in preparation for the upcoming election. Recent attacks at rallies for the candidates, specifically Marine Le Pen, have sparked a uptick in the number of policemen guarding major places of interest.
Also, more policemen have been deployed recently to thwart any potential terrorist attacks that have rattled all of France in the past few years and have caused a constant state of emergency throughout the country.
3. Armed with an Automatic Weapon
Police have now confirmed that the attacker used an automatic weapon to carry out the shooting, not unlike other recent shooting that have targeted Frenchmen and woman on French soil.
4. One Officer dead, Two Others Wounded
The attack left one police offer dead and two others injured. No civilians were injured in the shooting, but many civilians in the area quickly fled at the sound of gunshots.
5. Shooter Killed
Policemen not injured in the shooting were able to take down the gunmen by fatally shooting him, stopping any more potential casualties that could have taken place without the quick response by the police.
6. Took Place on Elysees Boulevard
The shooting took place on Elysees Boulevard in Paris, France, a popular tourist destination and also a very crowded street. Reports have claimed that many civilians and police were on the street at the time of the shooting.
7. Assailant was Labeled as an Extremist
The assailant, whose name has not been released by police yet, was on the country’s watch for some time. He was labeled an extremist by the country’s counter terrorism unit, but was never arrested nor imprisoned for his extremist beliefs.
Another important fact of the shooter is that he is a Belgian national. Many of the recent terror attacks have been carried out by terrorists that have most recently lived in Belgium, like the Paris massacre a few years ago.
8. ISIS has Claimed Responsibility
The belief that many had immediately after the attack was confirmed – this was an Islamist terrorist attack.
It quite shocking that the shooter did not scream “Allah Akbar” (“God is Great” in Arabic) while carrying out the attack, as many Muslim terrorists do yell this statement while killing the “non-believers” to please their god.
ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack. This comes at no shock since the self-described Islamic State has been vocal to its supporters about hurting and killing police officers in various countries.
The latest ISIS-inspired attack increases the death toll of deaths due to Muslim terrorist attacks to 235, according to the Associated Press.
9. Police Investigation – Could There be Accomplices?
The French Police have opened up a complete investigation in to this attack, designating it a terror attack and investigating it as such.
The police and the national counterterrorism units are specifically looking to see if there were any accomplices in the attack, as there frequently are in terror attacks. Usually an attack is planned out by someone with good knowledge of the area and carried out someone willing to risk their lives for Allah, the Muslim God.
10. French Candidates and U.S. President Trump have offered Condolences
United States President Trump was the first to offer his condolences for the French people. He stated that this attacks “looks like another terrorist attack,” and he was right before investigators were able to confirm his statement.
The three most notable French candidates in the upcoming election, Marine Le Pen, Francois Fillon, and Emmanuel Macron, offered their condolences to the dead police officers and their families. Mr. Fillon and Ms. Le Pen have shown anti-Islamic sentiments during the campaign, while Mr. Macron has been vocal about accepting refugees into society.