Three people were killed while several others were wounded at Notre Dame Basilica in the French city of Nice on Thursday morning, authorities said. The mayor would later deem the brutal slayings as an act of terror.
The attack took place around 9 am in Nice as an individual used a knife to kill three people, two women and a man. One woman was beheaded while the other two died inside the church.
Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi told local reporters he believed the attacker was an Islamist extremist.
“He cried ‘Allah Akbar!’ over and over, even after he was injured,” he said. “The meaning of his gesture left no doubt.”
The suspect is now in custody and has been hospitalized.
The attack comes following two other attacks on the same day. In southern France, a man was shot dead after threatening police with a handgun; in Saudi Arabia, a guard outside the French consulate was stabbed in Jeddah.
As a result, the French government raised their security alert to the highest level and deployed 7,000 troops for protecting schools and religious sites.
“I say this with the outmost clarity — we will not give in to terrorism,” French President Emmanuel Macron said in a statement.
Thursday’s attack comes just two weeks after the killing of Paty, who was beheaded in a terror attack in a Paris suburb by 18-year-old Abdoulakh Anzorov while walking home from school.
Back in July 2016, a terrorist drove a truck into crowds of people celebrating Bastille Day at Promenade des Anglais, killing 86 people and injuring over 458 others. The suspect, Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, a Tunisian living in France, was shot and killed by police.
The United States, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia all condemned the attack and stood by France.