Manhunt continues after fatal Strasbourg Christmas market shooting; suspect identified

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MEPs and EU staff hid from Strasbourg gunman

This picture taken with a mobile phone shows rescuers treating an injured person in the streets of Strasbourg, eastern France, after a shooting breakout, on December 11, 2018.

Nunez said it was believed that the attacker had been injured by security forces Tuesday night but that could not be confirmed.

The attack, which appeared to target Strasbourg's Christmas Market, was carried out by a 29-year old man on a French intelligence watchlist, he added. Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said the gunman was known to security services, and the local prefecture said he had previously been identified as a danger to security.

Police had been trailing Chekatt, a Strasbourg native and one of six siblings who was "well known" to authorities: He had 27 convictions in his criminal record, said Paris prosecutor Remy Heitz.

He was sentenced to prison in France in 2008 and in Basel, Switzerland, in 2013 for a slew of robberies, according to a 2016 court verdict in the southern German city of Singen.

"I heard shooting and then there was pandemonium", one witness, who gave his name as Fatih, told AFP.

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The French anti-terror police are handling the investigation.

Police vehicles move at the centre of the city of Strasbourg following a shooting in eastern France on Tuesday.

TWEET: "I express solidarity of the nation with whole Strasbourg, victims and their families". In response to Tuesday's shooting, the government chose to take the country's attack risk up a level on the official threat index.

Many people took refuge in local restaurants, bars and shops.

"We let everyone inside, down into the wine cellar". They found explosive materials during a search, he said.

The source did not give the address and it was unclear if the shooter had been located. The man reportedly bragged to the taxi driver about the attack.

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"Shocked and saddened by the bad attack in Strasbourg".

"Horrible reports about the shooting in Strasbourg", the Dutch Prime Minister said on Twitter.

The city was on lockdown for several hours with the public urged to remain put at home, in restaurants, shops and the European Parliament, where MEPs are in session this week. "Now we just wait".

Anadolu Agency via Getty Images The attack revived memories of a new millennium terror plot targeting Strasbourg's Christmas market.

ANSA says his parents, sister and girlfriend have travelled to France to join him. They feared being publicly named because the gunman is still being hunted by police.

The attack comes nearly exactly two years after the Berlin Christmas attack that saw failed Tunisian asylum seeker Anis Amri ram a truck through the city's market killing a dozen people and injuring dozens more.

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He is said to have been wounded in an exchange of fire with law enforcement officers.

France has been hit by several extremist attacks in recent years, including the 2015 Paris shootings which left 130 people dead and wounded hundreds more.

Rather than coordinated attacks, their main concern is attacks by "lone wolves" - self-radicalised individuals acting without links to terror groups such as Islamic State.

A Reuters reporter was among 30 to 40 people being held in the basement of a supermarket for their own safety in central Strasbourg, waiting for police to clear the area.

The attack is a new blow to France, which saw a wave of Islamic extremist killings in 2015 and 2016.

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