Two people are in a serious condition after a knife attack near the former offices of satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo in Paris and a suspect has been arrested, police have said.
Paris police headquarters said the victims’ lives were not in danger, and that no one else was wounded. Only one attacker was involved, police said, rather than two as first thought.
A man reportedly wearing bloodstained clothing and carrying a large knife or machete was detained near the Place de la Bastille in eastern Paris shortly after the attack, police said. All schools in the area were placed in lockdown as a security measure.
A suspicious package found in the area was examined by police scientists and found not to contain any explosive device.
A crisis control centre was opened at the interior ministry.
France Info radio said the victims were a man and a woman employed by a TV production company, Premières Lignes, based in the same building as the newspaper’s former offices. Other staff said they were standing outside when they were attacked by a man wielding a knife.
Early reports said four people had been wounded, but police later amended the figure to two.
It is unclear what motivated the attack on Friday lunchtime. Charlie Hebdo has moved from its previous address on the rue Nicolas-Appert since an attack by Islamist extremists in 2015 in which several of its editorial staff, including some of FRance’s best-known cartoonists, were among 12 people killed.
The trial of 14 suspects accused of involvement in the Charlie Hebdo killings, carried out by brothers Saïd and Chérif Kouachi, and in a subsequent attack on the Hyper Cacher kosher supermarket, is currently underway in Paris.
The magazine republished controversial cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad, which it first printed in 2006, to mark the start of the trial, saying in an editorial it would “never lie down … We will never give up.”