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2 journalists injured in Paris knife attack

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Blood-stained meat cleaver found at scene of the attack

Blood-stained meat cleaver found at scene of the attack

AP

Blood-stained meat cleaver found at scene of the attack

France opened an anti-terror investigation after two journalists were stabbed in Paris yesterday near the former offices of the Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine that was attacked by Islamist militants in 2015.

Prime minister Jean Castex, who rushed to the scene, said the main attacker had been arrested. A second person was also in custody, one is Pakistani, the other Algerian.

"I was in my office. I heard screams in the road. I looked out of the window and saw a woman who was lying on the floor and had taken a whack in the face from what was possibly a machete," a witness said.

Screaming

Another neighbour, who heard the attack, said there was a long, deathly shout from "a person who was screaming and screaming".

Mr Castex said the two wounded were attacked at random when taking a cigarette break. There lives are not in danger, he added.

"This attack happened in a symbolic place at the time when the trial of the terrible attacks on Charlie Hebdo took place," he said.

Europe 1 radio quoted police officials as saying the main suspect was 18, known to sec- urity services and was born in Pakistan.

One police source said a machete had been found at the scene. Another said a meat cleaver had been found there.

The national anti-terrorism prosecutor's office said it was investigating.

Fourteen people went on trial in Paris on September 2, accused of being accomplices in the attack on the Charlie Hebdo offices in January 2015 that killed 12 people.

The court heard they had sought to avenge the Prophet Mohammad, nearly a decade after the magazine published cartoons mocking him.

Police moved Charlie Hebdo's head of human resources from her home this week after threats against her life.

TV footage yesterday showed ambulances, fire tenders and police around Charlie Hebdo's former offices. Images on social media showed a person being stretchered away.