After evading the French police for nearly three days, a few hours ago the Charlie Hebdo murder suspects were cornered in an industrial building near Charles de Gaulle airport in the town of Dammarin-en-Goelle, 26 miles northeast of paris and 8 miles away from the airport, where they are said to have taken a hostage. Heavily armed police blocked approaches to the town and helicopters hovered in the fog overhead. Agence France-Presse said the men have taken a hostage. According to reports, the suspects have established police contact with the police and have said they are ready to "die as martyrs."
A quick recap of the situation from SkyNews:
- Suspects holed up on an industrial estate in Dammartin-en-Goele, 27 miles from the heart of Paris, with one person held hostage.
- They was a police chase and shootout after they earlier stole a car and fled on the N2 road.
- Up to 1,500 police - including swat teams, snipers and helicopters - are at the scene as negotiations go on.
- Residents told to stay indoors, stay away from windows and turn off lights.
- The brothers, Said and Cherif Kouachi, have reportedly said they are prepared to die as martyrs.
- Officials say the killing of a female police officer yesterday is linked to the Charlie Hebdo massacre.
Anecdotal reports have said some overflights are being diverted and runways at CDG airport may have been closed.
You can faintly see the outline of the industrial estate where the Dammartin siege is underway. pic.twitter.com/jFNZTDZYDM— briangingaje (@brianging) January 9, 2015
According to Bloomberg, the two men are holed up at a commercial printing business on the edge of the town, opposite a logistics site operated by grocer Carrefour SA. The town council asked residents to stay home in a statement on its website, and said students were confined to their schools. At Charles de Gaulle, France’s main international airport, operator Aeroports de Paris said flights were being re-routed around the area.
“An operation is currently under way in Dammartin-en-Goele and special police forces are being deployed,” Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said in televised comments. “All of the ministry’s forces, police forces, are mobilized.”
The two men may be in possession of a rocket launcher and other weapons, according to a police official who declined to be identified in line with government policy.
Cherif Kouachi was known to French police and spent time in prison for participation in a jihadist group. His brother Said may have received training at a militant camp in Yemen.
Noel Beckwith, a resident of Dammartin-en-Geoele, told Bloomberg Television that residents had heard “nothing at all” from police so far.
“We’re sort of barricaded in our house and looking out the windows.”
As Breaking911 added, one of the Kouachi brothers turned up at the printing factory, initially pretending to be a police officer, and told a worker: “Get out of here, we don’t kill civilians.” Local residents are being told to stay at home, switch off the lights, and stay away from their windows. Hundreds of people are sealed inside some local office buildings.
There have been reports that two people have been killed, but Paris prosecutors insist there have been no deaths.
Police are now negotiating with the two suspects, Said and Cherif Kouachi.
At least two planes have aborted landing attempts at the airport as the situation unfolds.
The latest: the two have asked to die as martyrs:
BREAKING: Lawmaker inside French command post says terror suspects say they want to die as martyrs.— The Associated Press (@AP) January 9, 2015
We are confident various enforcement agencies will gladly oblige.
Live feeds from Sky:
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And while the world follows the final showdown of the Kouachi brothers, a new cell may have been activated in Paris:
AFP: New shooting has broken out in eastern #Paris— Sky News Newsdesk (@SkyNewsBreak) January 9, 2015
BREAKING: Armed man takes hostage in kosher grocery east of Paris http://t.co/PBs3sMwhLt— Haaretz.com (@haaretzcom) January 9, 2015