Tourists strolling along Paris' famous Champs-Elysees boulevard watched in horror as a vehicle rammed into a police van Monday afternoon - and some witnessed the auto burst into flames as police grabbed the man inside and put him on the ground.
Previous major attacks targeted the Paris offices of the Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine in January 2015.
Interior Minister Gerard Collomb said the man was killed after an attempted attack on a police convoy. Consequently, the officials are treating the incident a terrorist attack.
The gunman, Karim Cheurfi, was shot dead by police and a note praising the Islamic State group was found next to his body.
Scientific police officers investigate on the suspected vehicle, right, after a man rammed into a police convoy on the Champs Elysees avenue in Paris, Monday, June 19, 2017.
Collomb said the driver, who was carrying several weapons and ammunition in his vehicle, had been killed.
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She showed her bare baby bump and soft smiled against a colorful flower scheme in the background. She captioned her Instagram post, "We would like to share our love and happiness".
Police vehicles prevent the access to the Champs Elysees avenue in Paris, France, Monday, June 19, 2017.
The assailant died in the incident, although investigators offered no immediate details about the cause of his death. French officials, speaking to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity, said the incident was a suspected attack on police.
Earlier this month, an attacker on foot went after a police patrol with a hammer in front of Notre Dame Cathedral.
They identified the man as from the suburb of Argenteuil, and said he had an "S" file, which means authorities had been aware of potential links to extremism.
Officers ringed the area as tourists and other onlookers gathered.
On Monday, police cordoned off a broad swath of the Champs-Elysees avenue that cuts through central Paris, warning people to avoid the area. France is under a state of emergency after a string of deadly Islamic extremist attacks.