Three people were killed at a church Thursday in Paris after someone attacked church members with a knife.
After the attack at Notre Dame Basilica, the prime minister raised its security alert status to the highest level, AP News reports.
The church killings were the third attack in two months in France, following the start of a trial of 14 people linked to the January 2015 killings at the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo and a kosher supermarket. The gunmen claimed to be part of the Islamic State group and al-Qaida. The newspaper had published caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad.
Police were able to wound the assailant in Thursday’s church killings. He is in the hospital, but police have not released his name.
“He cried ‘Allah Akbar!’ over and over, even after he was injured,” said Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi. “The meaning of his gesture left no doubt.”
The attack also came after Islamic State extremists had released a video on Wednesday calling for attacks against France.
Also Thursday, in Avignon, police shot an armed man to death after he refused to follow officer's warnings to drop his gun. At the French consulate in Jiddah, a man stabbed and wounded a guard.
Less than two weeks ago, an attacker beheaded a French middle school teacher who showed the caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad for a class on free speech.
In September, a man attacked bystanders with a butcher knife outside Charlie Hebdo’s former office.
The French Council of the Muslim Faith issued a statement and asked French Muslims to show “mourning and solidarity with the victims and loved ones” and refrain from events this week celebrating the birth of Muhammad.
Turkey’s Foreign Minister also condemned the church attack.
“We stand in solidarity with the people of France against terror and violence,” the statement said.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Arnold Jerocki/Stringer
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.