BREAKING: France on alert after shooting outside Notre Dame cathedral

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According to reports, the area outside Notre Dame cathedral in Paris has been evacuated after a police officer was attacked with a hammer. The attacker was shot in the chest.

This comes just three days after the attacks in London, when Islamists used vehicles and knifes to kill seven, naturally leading to speculation of a terror motive.

According to the BBC:

The suspect has been wounded in the chest, French media report. The shots prompted panic among visitors. The area around the cathedral has been closed and people are being asked to stay away.

France is in a state of emergency since attacks by jihadists in Paris left 130 people dead in 2015. The man attacked officers on duty at the Paris police headquarters, which is next to the cathedral, French media say.

In September of last year, three women radicalized by ISIS were arrested for attempting a thwarted attack near Notre Dame Cathedral. A counter-terrorism unit in Paris is opening an investigation to see if this attack had any terror motive as well.

This story is still developing and little public information is available. Future developments will be reported on separately.

[Note: This post was written by Matt Palumbo. He is a co-author of the new book A Paradoxical Alliance: Islam and the Left, and can be found on Twitter @MattPalumbo12]

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