Charlie Hebdo anniversary: Paris police shoot man dead

French police have shot dead a man who was apparently trying to attack a police station on the anniversary of the Charlie Hebdo attacks.

The suspect was carrying a meat cleaver and wearing a dummy suicide vest.

Minutes earlier, President Francois Hollande had praised police in a speech commemorating the January 2015 Paris killings.

Gunmen murdered 17 people in a series of attacks, including at Charlie Hebdo magazine and a Jewish supermarket.

In his address, Mr Hollande said 5,000 extra police and gendarmes would be added to existing forces by 2017 in an “unprecedented” strengthening of French security.

The Paris prosecutor’s office says it is opening a terrorism investigation into the incident on Thursday, which took place in the 18th district in northern Paris.

French officials say the suspect, who was wielding the butcher’s knife, shouted “Allahu Akbar!” (God is Great) outside a police station in Goutte d’Or, near Montmartre, before police shot and killed him.

A piece of paper with an Islamic State flag and claim for the attack written in Arabic was found on his body.

Bomb disposal experts were brought in after wires were seen extending from his body, but officials later said a belt he was wearing did not contain any explosives.

Anti-terror police and French intelligence services are treating the incident as a case of attempted murder.

Following the attack, a cordon was been set up around the area, and security was boosted at schools and on public transport networks in the city.

Correspondents say the time of the attempted attack – 11:30 local time – is potentially significant as this is the same time that two gunmen launched their massacre at Charlie Hebdo’s offices exactly one year ago.

Three days of attacks brought bloodshed to Paris and its surrounding areas last January.

The three attackers were shot dead by police, but questions remain about their jihadist contacts and possible accomplices in the Middle East.

Source: BBC

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