A gunman is on the run after a Greek Orthodox priest was shot at a church in Lyon, France, according to reports.
UPDATE: A man who matches the description of the suspect has now been detained by the French authorities, although he was not armed at the time he was taken into custody. This description released to the public only mentions the suspect’s clothing and weapon, and a motive for the shooting has bit been disclosed. The Lyon public prosecutor has confirmed that it has opened an investigation for attempted murder and that it is in “close contact” with the national anti-terrorism prosecutor’s office.
Original report continues below:
The shooting is said to have taken place at the Église Greek Orthodox church in the Jean-Macé sector of the city’s 7th district, with the cleric suffering life-threatening injuries. First responders are at the scene, which has been cordoned off.
BFM TV initially reported that the victim, who they described as an archpriest, was shot by a lone male armed with a handgun who approached him which he was locking up his church, citing police sources — although later sources seem to concur that the weapon was in fact a a sawn-off shotgun.
It is believed that the gunman remains at large at this time.
"Notre détermination ne faiblira pas": Jean Castex réagit à l'attaque sur un prêtre à Lyon pic.twitter.com/wOBeuI14YT
— BFM Lyon (@BFMLyon) October 31, 2020
Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin has instructed people to avoid the area and advised that he, Prime Minister Jean Castex, and President Emmanuel Macron will be coming together to convene a crisis unit.
Prime Minister Castex appears to be at the scene already, telling reporters: “Our determination will not weaken.”
The shooting follows a radical Islamic terrorist attack by a Tunisian migrant at a church in Nice which left three dead, although as yet the nature of the incident in Lyon is unclear.
#Lyon : Évitez le secteur et suivez les consignes.
Soutien à nos forces de sécurité et de secours sur place.
Je rentre à Paris et ouvre la cellule de crise, en lien avec le Président de la République et le Premier ministre.
— Gérald DARMANIN (@GDarmanin) October 31, 2020
This story is developing…