French soldiers patrol near the Louvre Museum in Paris as part of the highest level of “Vigipirate” security plan January 8. (Reuters)A “criminal” explosion occurred early Thursday at a kebab shop near a mosque in the eastern French town of Villefranche-sur-Saone, officials said, but left no casualties.
“It is a criminal act,” a local official told AFP, adding that a police investigation has been opened. No link was suggested with the deadly attack on Paris magazine Charlie Hebdo a day earlier.
A policewoman and a city employee were seriously hurt Thursday after a man wearing a bullet-proof vest opened fire with an automatic rifle outside Paris, police said, but no link has yet been established with Wednesday’s deadly attack on a satirical magazine.
The gunman is still on the run, said Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve -- who rushed to the scene at Montrouge just south of the city -- contradicting information given earlier by a source close to the case, who said the suspect had been detained.
Police initially said the two victims were critical, but Cazeneuve said just the policewoman was fighting for her life.
The incident comes on a day of mourning in France after Islamist gunmen stormed the office of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo on Wednesday, killing eight journalists, two police and two others.
The men are still thought to be on the run, and there has so far been no claim of responsibility for the massacre that has deeply shocked France.