An 84-year-old priest has been killed during a suspected Islamist terror attack at a Catholic church in northern France.
According to the French interior ministry, the murdered man was among nuns and worshippers taken hostage on Tuesday morning by men armed with knives.
A second victim is reportedly suffered life-threatening injuries, while three others were not injured.
Father Jacques Hamel has been identified as the priest killed in the incident.
Two attackers stormed the church in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray during a service at around 10am local time. The pair took the priest, two nuns and several members of the congregation hostage.
The situation lasted for around an hour. Police said the men shouted “Daesh” and cut the priest’s throat before being “neutralized.”
A terror investigation has been launched, with officials noting the church was being searched for bombs and booby traps.
Manuel Valls, France’s Prime Minister, tweeted: “Horror in the face of the barbaric attack on a church in Seine-Maritime. All of France and all Catholics are wounded. We stand together.”
Horreur face à l’attaque barbare d’une église de Seine-Maritime. La France entière et tous les catholiques sont meurtris. Nous ferons bloc.
— Manuel Valls (@manuelvalls) July 26, 2016
The incident follows the attack in Nice on July 14th, when 84 people were killed and more than 300 injured by a 31-year-old Tunisian who drove a truck into crowds celebrating Bastille Day.
The driver was killed by Police, who are reporting two new suspects have been detained in that investigation.