Man dies after ramming car carrying explosives into police convoy in Paris


A man deliberately rammed a vehicle carrying weapons and explosives into a police van as it drove in a convoy down Paris's Champs Elysees avenue on Monday, officials said.

Earlier this month, an attacker on foot went after a police patrol with a hammer in front of Notre Dame Cathedral.

Interior Ministry spokesman Pierre-Henry Brandet said the attacker appeared to have acted deliberately.

Collomb said the man's auto was carrying weapons and explosives that could have caused a blast. The Paris prosecutor's office has opened an anti-terror investigation.

Police forces secure the area on the Champs Elysées next to the suspected vehicle, center, in Paris on Monday.

Authorities said the situation was now under control and that no police or bystanders were injured.

It also marks the second time this year that Paris' most famous avenue, renowned for its shopping, dining and monuments, has been the scene of bloodshed.

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Gérard Collomb, France's interior minister, told reporters near the scene that police had found explosives, a Kalashnikov rifle, and an assortment of handguns in the white Renault sedan that the attacker had been driving.

He said police broke the window and pulled the man from the auto while other police used fire extinguishers to put out the blaze.

On Monday, police cordoned off a broad swath of the Champs-Elysees after the latest incident, warning people to avoid the area.

A bomb disposal police officer checks a vehicle in a sealed off area on the Champs-Elysees avenue in Paris on Monday.

Collomb said the attack "shows once again that the threat (of an attack) remains extremely high in France".

The local mayor Sylvain Tanguy said the family was "very discreet and didn't go out much".

Critics have said that the security regimen has failed to prevent attacks and has resulted in warrantless, extrajudicial searches and house arrests. Since March, the British capital has suffered two other terrorist attacks, one of which involved a vehicle attack on Westminster Bridge outside the Houses of Parliament.