A lone gunman has been arrested following a mass shooting on the streets of Paris on Friday which has left at least three people dead and multiple injured.
Emergency services were scrambled to a Kurdish cultural center, at rue d’Enghien in the 10th arrondissement of the French capital after a gunman opened fire, according to French broadcaster BFMTV citing the local prosecutor’s office.
“Seven to eight shots in the street, it’s total panic, we stayed locked inside,” a local shopkeeper told AFP as people panicked and attempted to flee the scene.
According to French media, authorities have arrested the shooter who is a 69-year-old male. His motives were initially unknown but Paris’ public prosecutor, Laure Beccau, confirmed later on Friday the suspect had previously been charged with racist violence in December last year when he attacked people at a Paris migrant tent camp with a sword.
According to one witness cited by BFMTV, one man was shot in the calf as he attended a barber shop in the district, and was being tended to by emergency services.
Another victim was also shot in the salon, while people in a nearby restaurant were also attacked.
An investigation has been opened for counts of murder, intentional homicides and aggravated violence by the Paris prosecutor’s office.
Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo tweeted her thanks to emergency services “for their decisive intervention this morning during the terrible attack,” and offered her “thoughts to the victims and their families.”
Deputy Mayor Emmanuel Grégoire confirmed local elected officials were liaising with the Paris police and Public Prosecutor’s Office to understand what happened, and said his thoughts were with “the victims and witnesses of this tragedy.”