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Paris | Six stabbed at Gare du Nord, attacker injured and arrested



(Paris) Six people were injured, including one seriously, by stabbing, Wednesday at the Gare du Nord in Paris, by a man immediately overpowered by the police on the spot who used their weapons, we learned from a police source and from the Paris prosecutor’s office.

The facts took place shortly before 6:45 a.m. local time (12:45 a.m. Eastern time) in the busiest station in Europe, which serves London and Brussels in particular, at a busy time.

No element allowed in the middle of the morning to evoke a terrorist attack, according to a source close to the file. The terrorist hypothesis “is not privileged”, it was commented.

The National Anti-Terrorist Prosecutor’s Office (Pnat) told AFP that it was currently “under evaluation”.

The prosecution has opened an investigation for attempted murder entrusted to the Criminal Brigade of the Paris judicial police.

Gare du Nord is the leading station in Europe and the third in the world in terms of traffic since it welcomes 700,000 people per day and more than 220 million passengers per year.

Departing trains serve the north of France, but also international destinations such as London via the Eurostar, or Belgium and the Netherlands via the Thalys.

For some reason that has not yet been determined, the man injured several people with a bladed weapon. The police officers subdued him by using their weapon several times, the same source added.

In total, six people were injured, five slightly and one seriously, according to the Paris prosecutor’s office. A policeman from the PAF (border police) was slightly injured during his intervention.

The attacker, whose vital prognosis is engaged, was taken care of on the spot by the emergency services, before being hospitalized, according to the prosecution.

During a press briefing, Gare du Nord, the Minister of the Interior Gérald Darmanin specified that the attack had started at “6.42 a.m., outside then inside the station, and was completed at 6.43 a.m. local time” with the intervention of the police who fired “three times”.

Regarding the weapon used, Mr. Darmanin affirmed that it was “not a knife” but “a threatening weapon”. It is a “punch”, added a police source.

The Minister specified that one of the police officers who intervened was in civilian clothes and off duty, but carried his weapon as he was authorized to do.

According to a police source, two PAF police officers were on patrol at the level of the access staircase to the Eurostar at the time of the events. One of them tried to surround the attacker who injured him with his punch. His colleague then intervened using his weapon, while the plainclothes policeman, alerted by the noise, immediately arrived and also shot the assailant.

No papers

The attacker, who had no papers on him, has not been identified, added Mr. Darmanin. The Minister asserted that the author had made no oral statement at the time of the attack.

After the attack, a security perimeter was immediately deployed.

An announcement was broadcast warning travelers of delays for their train. “The station continues to be operated normally, no interruption of traffic”, commented to AFP a spokesman for the SNCF.

Police officers have installed large white veils under the access stairs to the Eurostar to hide the view of the place from travelers.

The Minister of the Interior reacted immediately on Twitter by writing: “Thank you to the police for their courageous and effective reaction”, before arriving on site at 9 a.m. surrounded by a substantial security device to “thank the forces of order, ”said his entourage.

Paris police chief Laurent Nunez, Paris prosecutor Laure Beccuau and Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo were on hand to welcome him.

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