- Oops!Something went wrong.Please try again later.
- Oops!Something went wrong.Please try again later.
A woman has been decapitated, and two others have been killed, during a knife attack inside the Notre Dame Basilica church in the French city of Nice.
The mayor of Nice, Christian Estrosi, tweeted that the incident is a "terrorist" attack.
Here's what we know so far:
At least three people, two women and a man, have been killed, including one woman who was decapitated. The man is reportedly the sexton of the church. The man, a sacristan at the church, has been named locally as 45-year-old, father of two Vincent L.
The suspected attacker has been identified as Brahim Aoussaoui, a 21-year-old Tunisian migrant who
arrived in France from the Italian island of Lampedusa in October. He is reportedly unknown to French security services.
Nice mayor Christian Estrosi said it was a terrorist attack, and that the "Islamo-fascist" assailant "didn't stop shouting Allahu Akhbar even under medication" after being shot and arrested.
France raises its alert status to "terror attack emergency" - PM Castex.
President Emmanuel Macron has delivered a defiant message to the French people, saying the attacks would not force France to "give up our values".
A Saudi citizen has also been arrested in Jeddah for stabbing a security guard outside the French consulate with "a sharp tool".
A relative of the sacristan victim of a knife attack cries in front of the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Nice
Nice suspect revelation causes political row in Italy
The revelation that the suspect, named Brahim Aouissaoui, landed in late September on the tiny island south of Sicily sparked a major political row in Italy.
Italian authorities reportedly placed him in quarantine for two weeks on board a ship, the Rhapsody.
They then released him, telling him to leave Italy.
Instead, he traveled to the southern city of Bari, in the region of Puglia, and from there made his way to France in early October.
Matteo Salvini, the head of the League party, accused the government of being too lax on immigration controls and called for the resignation of the interior minister, Luciana Lamorgese.
“If it is confirmed that the attacker landed on Lampedusa in September, then went to Bari and then fled, then we will ask for the resignation of the interior minister,” said Mr Salvini, who was interior minister and deputy prime minister until last summer, when his coalition government collapsed.
President Trump says 'our hearts are with France'
President Trump has offered his condolences to the people of France, saying he stands by America's "oldest Ally".
"Our hearts are with the people of France. America stands with our oldest Ally in this fight. These Radical Islamic terrorist attacks must stop immediately. No country, France or otherwise can long put up with," he tweeted.
UN Secretary general condemns attack
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned the attack in the French tourist city of Nice.
Mr Guterres "strongly condemns the heinous attack today that took place in Notre Dame's Basilica in Nice," spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.
"He extends his condolences to the families of the victims and reaffirms the solidarity of the United Nations with the people and the Government of France," the spokesman added.
More details on Sartrouville suspect
In Sartrouville, north of Paris, a man was arrested around 1pm after his father called police and said his son had left home and planned "to do as in Nice".
Police stopped the man in his car near a local church, and Le Parisien reports that he was in possession of a knife. The car was searched, but nothing else was found.
Male victim identified
The man who was killed in this afternoon's attack has been named locally as Vincent L.
The 45-year-old father of two worked as a sacristan inside the church.
Nice supect named
The Nice suspect has been named as Brahim Aoussaoui.
Attacker a '21-year-old Tunisian migrant'
According to sources on the ground, the attacker has been identified as a 21-year-old Tunisian migrant.
According to BFMTV, the assailant told police that he is Tunisian, was born in 1999, and only arrived in France from the Italian island of Lampedusa in October.
He is reportedly unknown to French security services.
The attackers name has so far not yet been revealed, although police sources earlier identified him simply as 'Brahim'.
Avignon suspect was 'far-right' member
According to Le Monde, the armed man police shot dead in Avignon had threatened a shopkeeper of North African origin, claiming he was a member of "Generation Identitaire", a far-Right group.
Two arrests made in Lyon
According to Le Monde, one, an Afghan, was armed with a 30cm knife and wearing a tactical vest and is known to French intelligence services. He was arrested in a road near the Perrache train station.
The second individual was seized after shouting that he was going to attack someone. According to Le Monde, this individual was "clearly mentally unstable".
Valdimir Putin offers condolences
Russian President Vladimir Putin has extended his well-wishes to France via a telegram.
Mr Putin called the attack "a cynical and a cruel crime inside a church" and said that "the notions of human morals are absolutely alien to terrorists."
Macron speaks with Nice mayor
Macron delivers defiant address in Nice
President Emmanuel Macron has delivered a defiant message to the French people, saying the attacks would not force France to "give up our values".
He also said that he would be stepping up the deployment of soldiers to protect key French sites, such as places of worship and schools. He would be raising the number of troops deployed to 7,000, up from 3,000 currently on patrol.
"If we are attacked, it is because of our values, our values of freedom and our desire not to yield to terror," he said.
More details released on Lyon arrest
The suspect, an Afghan national in his 20s who was dressed in traditional Afghan clothes, had already been flagged to French intelligence services, according to a police source.
"He was carrying a 30-centimetre (12-inch) knife and seemed ready to take action," Pierre Oliver, the mayor of Lyon's Second Arrondissement, told AFP.
He is currently being questioned and will probably have a psychological exam, the source said.
The arrest took place near the Perrache train station in the historic heart of the city, not far from where a parcel bomb wounded 14 on a busy pedestrian street in May 2019.
Man with knife arrested outside church in Sartrouville
A man with knife arrested outside church in Sartrouville, France reportedly claimed he wanted to carry out attack similar to earlier one in Nice, according to French media reports
First pictures from Avignon
Afghan man with knife arrested in Lyon
A man armed with a long knife was arrested in the southeastern French city of Lyon on Thursday as he attempted to board a tram, a source close to the inquiry told AFP.
The suspect, an Afghan national in his 20s who was dressed in a traditional Afghan outfit, had already been flagged to French intelligence services, the source said.
Saudi Arabia says 'extremist acts contravene all religions'
Saudi Arabia "strongly condemns" the attack, the kingdom's foreign ministry said in a statement.
"The kingdom categorically rejects such extremist acts, which contravene all religions ..., while stressing the importance of avoiding all practices which generate hatred, violence and extremism," said the statement published by the state news agency SPA.
Emmanuel Macron arrives in Nice
The French president is talking to members of the emergency services, alongside Nice mayor Mayor Christian Estrosi
Forensics on the scene on Nice
Nicolas Sarkozy condemns attack
Former French president Nicolas Sarkozy denounced the attack, saying: "France must display faultless determination and great sang froid so as not to fall into the trap the enemies of democracy want to lure us into."
"In these moments in which innocent lives are so under threat, unity must be the rule in support of our institutions and those who symbolise them. The hour is not for polemics or politics. It is for everyone to fight against barbarity and for civilisation."
Latest from Jeddah
A statement from the Mecca region's police said the guard suffered "minor injuries" and that "legal action" was being taken against the perpetrator.
The French Embassy said the consulate was subject to an "attack by knife which targeted a guard", adding the guard was taken to hospital and his life was not in danger.
A picture has emerged from the scene, showing a strong police presence outside the consulate.
Witness describes horror of attack
A witness called David, who runs the Brioche Chaude restaurant, opposite the church, told BFMTV he had alerted the police.
“I was selling croissants when a man came in and said to me: ‘Monsieur, there’s a decapitated woman in the cathedral’. I didn’t believe him at first but he repeated it. I went to the cathedral and saw the municipal police and called to them. They came quickly."
“I went back [to the restaurant] and pulled down the security grill.”
He added: “The person who came in was someone who had been in the cathedral who was very shocked. He just said: ‘Monsieur there is a woman decapitated in the cathedral’. That’s all. I was shocked. I’m still shaking.”
Belgian PM offers condolences
Belgium's Prime Minister Alexander De Croo has tweeted his sympathies to the victims of today's attack.
Mes plus sincères condoléances aux familles des victimes de l'attentat de #Nice.
Notre pays condamne avec la plus grande fermeté toute forme de terrorisme et de violences extrémistes.
Nous sommes encore plus déterminés à protéger nos valeurs et nos libertés.
— Alexander De Croo (@alexanderdecroo) October 29, 2020
Latest from the scene
Dutch PM Mark Rutte will stand with France after 'abominable' attack
Mark Rutte has tweeted that the French people "are not alone in the fight against extremism".
Pour la deuxième fois en peu de temps, la France est touchée par un abominable acte terroriste, cette fois à Nice. Nos pensées vont aux proches des victimes. À nos amis français nous disons : vous n’êtes pas seuls dans le combat contre l’extrémisme, les Pays-Bas sont à vos côtés.
— Mark Rutte (@MinPres) October 29, 2020
Dominic Raab condemns the attack
UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has released a statement: “The UK stands with France today in sorrow, shock and solidarity at the horrifying events in Nice. Our thoughts are with the victims and their families and we offer every support to the French people in pursuing those responsible for this appalling attack.”
Boris Johnson: 'We stand with France'
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the country stood steadfast with France after an attacker beheaded a woman and killed two other people.
"I am appalled to hear the news from Nice this morning of a barbaric attack at the Notre-Dame Basilica," Mr Johnson said on Twitter in both English and French.
"Our thoughts are with the victims and their families, and the UK stands steadfastly with France against terror and intolerance."
The mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, also tweeted a message of support: "Horrific news of barbaric attacks in France this morning. London stands in solidarity with France and against the evil forces of hate which try to divide us. My heart goes out to the victims and all those affected."
Vatican condemns attack
The Pope has condemned this morning's attack, saying terrorism is "never acceptable". He also said he will be praying for the victims.
"Today's attack has sown death in a place of love and consolation. The Pope is aware of the situation and is close to the mourning Catholic community," Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni said in a statement.
"He prays for the victims and their loved ones, so that the violence may cease, so that we may return to look upon ourselves as brothers and sisters and not as enemies, so that the beloved French people may unite to combat evil with good", he said.
France raises alert status to 'terror attack emergency'
France has raised its alert status to the highest possible level of "terror attack emergency", French prime minister Jean Castex has announced.
Former Malaysian PM calls Macron 'primitive', 'uncivilised' in wake of attack
In an extraordinary statement on Twitter, former Malaysian PM Dr Mahathir Mohamad called Emmanuel Macron "primitive" for blaming Islam and that "Muslims have a right to be angry and to kill millions of French people for the massacres of the past".
Dr Mohamad went on to suggest that the way women dress in the West, and indeed equality between the sexes, are values that are not necessarily compatible with the rest of the world.
Dr Mohamad has courted controversy before. He has been accused of anti-semitism after referring to Jews as "hook-nosed,” and said that they “rule the world by proxy”.
1. A teacher in France had his throat slit by an 18-year-old Chechen boy. The killer was angered by the teacher showing a caricature of Prophet Muhammad. The teacher intended to demonstrate freedom of expression.
— Dr Mahathir Mohamad (@chedetofficial) October 29, 2020
French PM gives statement
Jean Castex, the French prime minister, said the nation shares the pain and huge emotion of victims and its families.
"This act, which is as barbarous as it is cowardly, has plunged the entire nation into mourning," he told MPs.
French newspaper editor offers thoughts
Christine Pedotti, editor of French newspaper Témoignage Chrétien, said: “This is frightful and its aim is precisely to terrify us. For me, the murder of Samuel Paty and this terror attack in a church target the most sacred places for us - schools and churches, but it could have been synagogues or mosques."
“These are places where we are ourselves and with others. The aim is to separate and divide people. For us Christians the great divider is the Devil, that is what is at work here.”
Turkey condemns attack
A Turkish foreign ministry spokesman said: “No reason could legitimise or excuse killing someone or violence. Those who conducted this savage attack at a sacred place of worship do not clearly share any religious, humane or moral values."
"Turkey is in solidarity with French people as a nation who also lost her citizens to terrorism”.
Turkey's statement comes after days of tensions between themselves and France.
Over the weekend, President Erdogan said his French counterpart needed "some sort of mental treatment" after Mr Macron vowed to crack down on radical Islam.
"What is Macron's problem with Islam? What is his problem with Muslims?" Mr Erdogan said.
"European countries do not even feel the need to cover up their hatred toward Islam anymore," he added.
"France and Europe, in general, do not deserve the vicious, provocative, hateful policies of (French President Emmanuel) Macron and those who follow the same mentality."
Europe stands 'in solidarity' with France, says Charles Michel
"All my solidarity with France and the French," tweeted Charles Michel, president of the European Council.
"My thoughts go to victims of the abominable Nice attack and their loved ones. All of Europe is with you."
Conference of European Rabbis offer condolences
Chief Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, president of the Conference of European Rabbis, has offered his thoughts on this morning's events.
“I am horrified by the barbaric attack in Nice this morning. Europe’s Jews pray for the victims and their families, and for the recovery of those injured," he said.
"Once again, murder has been committed in the name of religion and this appears to be the second similar incident in a matter of days. It is imperative that religious and communal figures make it clear that murder is abhorred by religion and such attacks stand in total contradiction to Islam’s explicit recognition of tolerance and compassion.”
Ursula von der Leyen condemns 'heinous and brutal' attack
Je condamne l'attaque odieuse et brutale qui vient de se dérouler à Nice et suis de tout cœur avec la France. Mes pensées vont aux victimes de cet acte haineux.
L’Europe tout entière est solidaire avec la France. Nous restons unis et déterminés face à la barbarie et au fanatisme
— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) October 29, 2020
French church bells to toll this afternoon
Bells are due to toll in churches all around France at 3pm French time in tribute to the victims of the Nice attack.
Nice imam Boubakeur Bekri said: "This is hateful, this is a crime and we feel deeply revolted by this machination. Muslims must react and denounce this horror. We must express our refusal of this situation.”
François Hollande, ex-French president, said: “Once again Nice is hit by barbarity, once again France is hit by terrorism. But democracy is our weapon and will always be the strongest against such enemies.”
Angela Merkel offers support to neighbour
Angela Merkel has voiced her solidarity with France after the "brutal" attack in Nice.
"I am deeply shaken by the brutal murders in the church in Nice. My thoughts are with the relatives of those murdered and injured. Germany stands with France at this difficult time," she said, in a tweet posted by her spokesman Steffen Seibert.
Saudi police offer more details on Jeddah stabbing
The Saudi Press Agency report, citing police spokesman Maj. Mohammed al-Ghamdi, said the special force for diplomatic security was able to arrest the Saudi man.
He is said to be in his 40s. The guard was taken to a hospital for treatment, the agency said.
No motive has so far been given.
Nice mayor to close all of town's churches
Nice mayor Christian Estrosi said all churches would shut in the town and called for those around the country to be given added security or to be closed as a precaution.
French government spokesman Gabriel Attal has said his country "will never renounce its principles and values" in regard to media freedom and fight against Islamic extremism.
Latest from French consulate in Jeddah
A file photo from outside the French consulate has emerged online.
— Annu Kaushik (@AnnuKaushik253) October 29, 2020
The French embassy have also released a statement.
Life of guard at French consulate 'not in danger'
The French embassy have released a statement saying the guard in the Jeddah consulate attack has been hospitalised but his "life [is] not in danger".
"The assailant was apprehended by Saudi security forces immediately after the attack. The guard was taken to hospital and his life is not in danger," the embassy said in a statement.
Avignon suspect 'threatened public'
Police in Avignon confirm they have shot one person dead after they "threatened passers by with a weapon".
Police have since released a statement saying the suspect was using a "handgun" to threaten the public.
Suspect with knife shot after attacking police in Avignon
A further suspected attack has occurred in Avignon, France.
A suspect with a knife reportedly shouting "Allahu Akbar" has been fatally shot during an attack on police officers in the southeastern French city.
Saudi arrested in Jeddah for stabbing guard at French consulate
Elsewhere, a Saudi citizen has been arrested in Jeddah for stabbing a security guard outside the French consulate with "a sharp tool", according to reports from Reuters.
Italian PM condemns attack
Italy's Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has condemned the "vile attack" this morning.
"The vile attack... will not shake the common front defending the values of freedom and peace," Mr Conte posted on Twitter.
"Our convictions are stronger than fanaticism, hatred and terror."
Armed police storm church
More video is emerging from Nice from this morning's terror attack:
French Catholic Church condemn 'unspeakable' attack
France's Catholic Church condemned what it called "an unspeakable attack" and warned: "Christians must not become symbols to be slaughtered."
More details released on victims and attacker
According to police sources, among the victims is a 70-year old woman who was "partially beheaded" inside the church.
A man stabbed to death inside the building was the church sexton.
The third victim, a woman aged around 40, was stabbed in the church but managed to escape to a nearby bar where she died shortly afterwards from her wounds.
Police said the assailant remained conscious after being shot and claimed responsibility for his act, was called Brahim and had "acted alone". Police took his fingerprints to check whether he is on a security or terror watchlist.
Situation 'under control'
Police spokeswoman Florence Gavello has said that the "situation is now under control."
Russia reacts to attack
The Kremlin has released a statement on the incident in Nice.
The Russians say it is "unacceptable to insult religious believers' feelings" and it is also "unacceptable to kill people".
Lawmakers hold moment of silence
Latest from the scene
France's Muslim Council condemns attack
France's Council for the Muslim Faith, CNFM, said it "forcefully condemns the terrorist attack that took place at the Notre-Dame basilica in Nice."
"As a sign of mourning and solidarity for the victims and their families, I call on all Muslims of France to cancel all festivities for Mawlid (celebrating the birth of the Prophet Mohammed)", taking place on Thursday, said CNFM president Mohammed Moussaoui in a Tweet.
Victims stabbed inside church
French media are reporting that two women and a man were stabbed inside the church.
French police filmed storming Basilica
Footage has emerged online of French police storming the church
BREAKING - Mayor of Nice: "The terrorist shouted Allah-u-Akbar at the time of the attack," then beheaded a person inside the church of Notre-Damme in Nice. 2 more dead.pic.twitter.com/2VGf29Ateo
— Disclose.tv 🚨 (@disclosetv) October 29, 2020
French parliament observe moment of silence
Members of the French parliament temporarily suspended a debate on the new national lockdown to observe a moment's silence in remembrance of those killed during the attack.
Police believe attacker a 'lone wolf'
A police source has told French media that the authorities believe the attacker was acting alone. An official has said they are not currently searching for other assailants.
A second dark day for Nice
Nice has already paid a high price from terrorism.
On Bastille Day in 2016, some 86 people died when a truck plowed into a crowd along Nice's popular beach-side Promenade des Anglais where revellers had gathered to watch fireworks. Police shot and killed the perpetrator, Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, a Tunisian resident of France.
The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack.
Individual stretchered away
Video footage has emerged online, showing one person being stretchered away by the emergency services. It is not clear who the individual is.
Macron heading to Nice
President Emmanuel macron is currently travelling to Nice in response to the incident
An attack with precedent
This is not the first time a French church has been the target of a terror attack. On 26 July 2016, two Islamists attacked a congregation at a Mass at a Catholic church in Saint-Étienne-du-Rouvray, Normandy, northern France.
Wielding knives and wearing fake explosive belts, the men took six people captive and later killed one of them, 85-year-old priest Jacques Hamel, by slitting his throat.
The attackers, 19-year-olds Adel Kermiche and Abdel Malik Petitjean, had pledged allegiance to Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, which claimed responsibility for the attack.
Nice mayor speaks of 'Islamofacism'
In a statement to reporters, the mayor of Nice Christian Estrosi spoke of "Islamofacism" in relation to the attack.
The "Islamo-fascist" assailant "didn't stop shouting Allahu Akhbar even under medication" after being shot and arrested, said Mr Estrosi, leaving "no doubt that this was a terror attack".
"As I speak there are without doubt two victims killed in the same manner as Samuel Paty," the teacher decapitated by a Chechen extremist outside a secondary school in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, a suburb of Paris, after showing pupils caricatures of the Prophet Mohamed during a class on freedom of expression.
Enough is enough. It is time now that France rid itself of the rules of peace to annihilate the scourge of Islamo-fascism," said Mr Estrosi.
Nice attack in pictures
French anti-terror police investigating
The prosecutor in France's anti-terror department has said the department has been asked to investigate the incident.
Nice mayor Christian Estrosi said: "Everything suggests that this is a terror attack."
Gunshots reported inside the church
There are reports of gunshots inside the church. Residents inside the security cordon have been ordered to remain indoors. Armed police are at the scene along with emergency services.
Death toll rises to three
French police have confirmed a third person is dead following the attack.
French police chief gives statement
The attack comes days after France’s police chief, Frédéric Veaux, announced that he was bolstering security around churches, mosques and other religious sites “notably on the occasion of Christian religious celebrations around All Saints”.
“France is the target of a high terror threat,” he said, noting that on October 25, a news agency close to al Qaeda “reiterated” the terror group’s call to attack France.
He said police there was a risk of attack by “knives” and vehicles.
Several explosions heard in central Nice
Several explosions have been heard in central Nice near the Notre-Dame basilica where the attack took place.
The assailant has been arrested and is in a critical condition at the Pasteur hospital in Nice, according to French media.
MPs in France’s National Assembly observed a minute’s silence in “solidarity for the victim or victims”.