Paris police in manhunt after driver mows down soldiers

Police and military officers set up a security perimeter near the site where six soldiers of the anti-terrorism Sentinelle operation were hit by a car in Levallois-Perret, near Paris, France, 09 August 2017. [Christophe Petit Tesson/EPA]

French soldiers were hit and injured by a vehicle in the western Paris suburb of Levallois-Perret, Paris police authorities said on Wednesday (9 August), adding that a security operation was underway in the area.

“Police intervention is underway. Search underway for vehicle,” the Paris police department said in a Tweet.

Six soldiers were hurt, four of them lightly and two more seriously, a police department official added in response to a query from Reuters.

The attack took place at around 8:00 Wednesday morning and police are still searching for the suspect and the vehicle, which they say was a dark BMW.

Patrick Balkany, the local mayor, told BFM TV “Without any doubt, it was a deliberate act.”

“It’s an odious act of aggression,” he added.

“It all happened very quickly. The vehicle did not stop. It hurtled at them … it accelerated rapidly.” The soldiers were rushed to hospital, Balkany said.

France remains on maximum alert after a string of attacks in which Islamist militants or Islamist-inspired attackers have killed more than 230 people over the past two years.