Paris, France, March 11, 2024—The first mass shooting in modern history in a city where the police have been trained to defend themselves is now the subject of an investigation by French authorities.
A spokesman for the Paris police said Saturday that the investigation was ongoing, and that the shooter, an Algerian, was shot dead.
A witness told Le Parisien newspaper that he saw the attacker get out of a car and then fire his gun at people in the street.
Police are still trying to determine what motivated the attacker, who was also known to have been radicalized and was known to carry out other acts of violence, the newspaper said.
French President Emmanuel Macron said the incident would have repercussions for the country’s political, social, and economic outlook, and added that the country must come together.
A statement from the French prosecutor’s office said the investigation into the attack is ongoing.
The prosecutor’s spokesman said the attacker was known by the name of Anis Amri, who had previously been identified as a suspected jihadist by security services in the past.
A video of Amri appeared to show him shooting at pedestrians, and the gunman has been detained, the prosecutor’s statement said.
It was not immediately clear if the man who was detained had been charged.
Amri, 27, is a convicted criminal and was convicted in absentia for a violent crime, the statement said, but did not provide further details.
In recent months, authorities have been struggling to contain the surge in Islamist extremism in Europe, a region already grappling with a high level of Islamic radicalization.
A man suspected of shooting dead two women in the southern city of Marseille in March 2017 was a member of a small group known as “the Black Knights,” a reference to an Islamist-inspired group that was banned by France in 2007, the day before the Paris attack.
France has seen at least one shooting in recent years in the wake of Islamic State propaganda that encourages violent attacks against France.