Police hunt cycling suspect over Lyon parcel bomb blast that injured 13
- New CCTV images of the terror suspect have been released by French police
- Police said several people had been injured in the blast on a busy street in Lyon
- The so-called ‘parcel bomb’ appeared to be filled with nails, screws and bolts
- The area where the bomb explosion occurred has now been evacuated by police
- Suspected bomber, a man in his 30s, was captured on a bike wearing sunglasses
New CCTV images of the man suspected of being behind a parcel bomb attack in Lyon, France, have been released by police.
At least 13 people including an eight-year-old girl were wounded in the suspected terrorist attack, with police hunting a man in his 30s.
A massive explosion was heard just after 5.30pm on a busy street in the city centre, and a man on a bicycle was seen placing a bag on the ground just moments before.
French police have revealed more CCTV images of the man they suspect is behind the Lyon terror attack
The images show a man, in his mid-30s, on a bike wearing sunglasses cycling around the city.
Eleven victims were rushed to hospital from the scene of the attack outside a bakery in the Victor Hugo square, but their injuries were not thought to be life threatening.
A terrorism probe was opened by the Paris prosecutor’s office, which has jurisdiction over all terror cases in the country.
Police issued an appeal for witnesses on Twitter as they sought the man believed to be in his early 30s, who was picked up by security cameras on a mountain bike immediately before the explosion.
The so-called ‘parcel bomb’, which injured 13 people including an eight-year-old girl, appeared to be filled with nails, screws and bolts
The images show a man, in his mid-30s, on a bike wearing sunglasses cycling around the city
Emergency service workers load injured people into ambulances after the bomb blast Friday, which French President Emmanuel Macron labelled ‘an attack’
Forensics officers inspect the area on Friday evening after a parcel bomb packed with nails, screws and bolts went off at around 5.30pm
Forensics officers in protective clothing examine the scene, taking photos and gathering evidence on Friday evening after at least 13 people – including a young girl – were injured in the blast
‘Anti terrorist officers are at the scene along with other police,’ said a spokesman for the local emergency services.
‘A man in his mid 30s was seen placing a possible parcel bomb, and a hunt has been launched to try and find him.’
The suspected bomber had his head covered and was wearing dark glasses, but was caught on CCTV.
‘He was wearing a dark top and Bermuda shorts,’ an officer added. ‘Municipal cameras would have caught him on his bike.’
Specialist police force officers sit in a vehicle to secure the perimeter around the Rue Victor Hugo on Friday evening
An officer armed with a tactical assault rifle and wearing a balaclava secures the scene in central Lyon
A view over the street in central Lyon where police officers gather (left) and forensics officers (right) gather evidence in the cordoned off area
Interior Minister Christophe Castaner was at the scene in downtown Lyon to support police officers in their intervention and offer reassurance to the public
Emergency workers carry a person injured in a suspected package bomb blast along a pedestrian street in the heart of Lyon
‘There was an explosion and I thought it was a car crash,’ said Eva, a 17-year-old student who was about 15 metres (50 feet) from the site of the blast.
‘There were bits of electric wire near me, and batteries and bits of cardboard and plastic. The windows were blown out,’ he said.
French President Emmanuel Macron interrupted a TV interview about the European Parliament elections to announce: ‘There’s been a bomb attack in Lyon, there are injuries’.
French officers stand beside a police cordon set up in the aftermath of the explosion which French President Emmanuel Macron described as an attack
Anti-terror soldiers secure the site of the suspected bomb attack in central Lyon as authorities hunt for a man in his 30s
‘A girl aged eight is among the injured,’ said local police union spokesman Alain Bardelis.
‘There was a crowd movement after the man was scene placing the bags on the ground.
‘The blast was on the corner of Victor Hugo and Sala streets, which have now been blocked off.
‘Military and police forces are on the streets, along with anti-terrorist officers.’
A ‘parcel bomb’ filled with nails, screws and bolts exploded on a busy street in Lyon, France
Emergency workers attended to an injured person in the back of an ambulance after the bomb blast in Lyon
French police escort the emergency services following a suspected package bomb blast along a pedestrian street in the heart of Lyon
Authorities are saying a man on a bicycle was seen placing a bag on the ground just moments before the blast
Another witness living in a flat on Victor Hugo said: ‘We heard a monstrous noise, and our windows came in. We could see that people were running everywhere down below. I saw people wounded.
‘The explosion was from the pavement in front of the bakery. We’ve heard it was a bomb packed with nuts and bolts.’
President Emmanuel Macron called the blast an ‘attack’ during a live Facebook interview, adding that no deaths had been reported ‘for the time being.’
‘It’s not for me to give a toll but it appears there are no casualties. There have been injuries, so obviously I’m thinking of these injured and their families,’ Macron said.
David Kimefeld, president of the metropolis of Lyon, said: ‘I condemn with the utmost firmness the bomb attack that took place in the late afternoon Rue Victor Hugo in Lyon.
‘My first thoughts go to the victims and their families. I salute the courage of firefighters who mobilized very quickly to help the victims.
‘This barbaric act reminds us that the fight against terrorism is a daily battle and that we must never relax our vigilance.’
Shocked shoppers looked on as a large police presence filled the busy pedestrian street in the heart of Lyon
A dressed victim being loaded into an ambulance after the attack, with officials later saying there were no serious injuries
A police officer carries evidence at the site of the suspected bomb attack in Lyon on Friday evening
Police officers are seen near the site of a suspected bomb attack in central Lyon this evening
A row of ambulances are spotted as emergency workers attended to injured people in the back of an ambulance after the attack
The cause of the blast wasn’t immediately known, said Kamel Amerouche, the regional authority’s communications chief.
Amerouche told The Associated Press the victims had leg injuries that weren’t life-threatening.
He said the explosion occurred in or outside a store of the bakery chain Brioche Doree and the area had been cordoned off by police.
Live television images of the street showed the Brioche Doree sign intact and police vans and an ambulance at the scene.
The attack upended last-minute campaigning ahead of the European Parliament vote on Sunday with Prime Minister Edouard Philippe cancelling his appearance at his centrist party’s final rally Friday night.
The bombing follows a series of Isis and al-Qaeda attacks on France over the past five years that have seen 250 people killed in a series of devastating attacks.
They started in January 2015 with a murderous attack on the offices of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo by two brothers affiliated to al-Qaeda.
Later that year, in November, a series of assaults by Isis terrorists carrying Kalashnikov and explosive in Paris caused 130 deaths.
Armed police are seen near the site of the suspected bomb attack in central Lyon
The area where the explosion occurred has been evacuated with at least eight people injured
The package contained ‘screws or bolts’ and had been placed in front of a bakery on the corner of the two popular streets
Isis has targeted France since the country became involved in bombing raids on the so-called Isis caliphate in Syria and Iraq, but that has been decimated in recent months.
Despite this, Interior Minister Christophe Castaner and his security chiefs have warned the threat of further violent crimes ‘remains very high’.
Last month two Frenchmen were charged in Paris on suspicion of planning an attack on a school or a police officer.
Far-Right groups have also been intercepted planning assaults on ethnic minority targets and politicians, including President Macron himself.
The attack comes on the even of European Parliament elections in France, when millions will go to the polls to elect new MEPs.
Anti-government Yellow Vest protestors have also been causing chaos in major cities such as Lyon every weekend as they call for Mr Macron tor resign.
Particularly disturbing attacks on the police have taken place in Lyon, but none have caused fatalities.
Following the bomb explosion, Interior Minister Christophe Castaner called on prefects to ‘reinforce security in public place’ and urged people to ‘be vigilant.’
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