Paris police operation underway on Champs-Elysees

Man arrested on Champs Elysees in Paris after driving into a police vehicle

Paris police operation underway on Champs-Elysees

"Once again, French security forces were targeted with this attempted attack on the Champs-Elysees", Collomb said, adding that "a number of weapons, explosives to blow up this car" were discovered at the scene.

Brandet said bomb squads were still securing the scene and that the attacker appeared to have acted deliberately.

Police have closed two of the metro stations on the Champs-Elysees, a major tourist draw in the French capital.

Last month a police officer was killed and two seriously injured following a shooting at the Champs-Elysees.

It was unclear how the man, who was not named, had died. Footage recorded shortly afterwards at the site, a short walk from the Elysee presidential palace and the US embassy, showed yellow smoke billowing from the vehicle.

The country remains under a state of emergency imposed after the November 2015 attacks in Paris, when militants slaughtered 130 people in a night of carnage at venues across the city.

Earlier, police advised people to avoid the area, as about 20 police vans and several armed officers surrounded the man on the ground.

The Minister said the security threat to France remained "at its highest level" and that he would be ensuring that the State of Emergency "remains in place permanently for the foreseeable future".

"They got out of a police truck and tried to break the glass and take the man out, they shot and threw tear gas and they took him out by force.", he said.

No police officers or passers-by were hurt, the Paris police department said.

Victoria Boucher and daughter Chrystel came in from the suburb of Cergy-Pontoise for a Paris visit and were not afraid to go to the famed avenue.

Police in Paris say the situation is under control and that no injuries were sustained by police officials or members of the public.

"We were better off inside than outside", Chrystel said.

"The show must go on", her daughter says in English.

The gunman, Karim Cheurfi, was shot dead by police and a note praising the Islamic State group was found next to his body.

The Paris prosecutor's counterterrorism unit said an investigation had been opened into the incident, which happened only a short walk from the Elysee presidential palace and the United States embassy.

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