Paris, Jan 7: Two unidentified "black-hooded" gunmen opened gunfire in front of a media office in Paris on Wednesday, Jan 7.
According to the latest reports, twelve people were shot dead and ten injured at the headquarters in the deadly gunfire. Those among the injured, five are said to be in critical condition.
The magazine Charlie Hebdo, where the attack took place, is a satirical weekly based in Paris. The attackers were allegedly armed with "rocket propelled grenades".
The police has locked down the entire area where the attack took place.
One of the witness was quoted saying as to the BBC, "Two black-hooded men entered the building with Kalashnikovs (AK-47 rifles). A few minutes later we heard lots of shots."
The magazine was fire-bombed in November 2011, a day after it carried a caricature of Prophet Mohammed.
"No doubt, it's a terror attack", says French President Francois Hollande
Meanwhile, French President Francois Hollande has reached the crime scene and is scheduled to hold an emergency cabinet meeting.
Hollande told media persons, "Media shooting was 'undoubtedly terrorist attack of exceptional barbarity".
While appealing for the national unity, Hollande said, "People had been "murdered in a cowardly manner. We are threatened because we are a country of liberty."
"The security status of the media houses has been raised to the highest level in Paris", he further said.
Gunmen escape the crime scene
The gunmen have reportedly escaped the scene and are absconding. The police have launched a massive operation to nab the gunmen.
The police have advised the French media to be on security alert following the firing incident.
Caricature on ISIS chief triggered attack?
In 2011, the magazine had reportedly published a controversial caricature of Prophet Mohammed. This is the the second such attack on this magazine office in last four years.
In its latest cartoon, the magazine had published the caricature of the ISIS chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
Journalists reportedly took refuge on the roof of Charlie Hebdo.
Journalists who made caricature dead?
Reports said that the Magazine's editor-in-chief Stephane Charbonnier and cartoonists Charb et and Cabu have died in the attack. However, other sources say Charb is wounded but alive.
Before fleeing after killing 12 people at the Charlie Hebdo Headquarters, the gunmen reportedly shouted they had "avenged the prophet", reports claimed.
There are reports that the car in which the gunmen stormed to the magazine office has been found, however, the attackers are yet to be traced.
Here are the reactions from India and other countries:
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also condemned the shooting incident in the French capital, Paris.
He tweeted: Condemnable & despicable attack in Paris. Our solidarity with people of France. My thoughts are with families of those who lost their lives.
Condemnable & despicable attack in Paris. Our solidarity with people of France. My thoughts are with families of those who lost their lives.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) January 7, 2015
President Pranab Mukherjee said, "The world community must unite to root out terror from every country and society," he was quoted as saying in a press release issued by Rashtrapati Bhavan. Mukherjee conveyed his condolences to the families of the bereaved and prayers for the speedy recovery of the injured.
"Congress President Smt Sonia Gandhi has condemned the cowardly and dastardly terror attack on Media in #Paris," the Congress said in a tweet.
British PM David Cameron condemned the 'sickening' murders at the French satirical weekly and said, "We stand with the French people in the fight against terror & defending the freedom of the press."
The murders in Paris are sickening. We stand with the French people in the fight against terror and defending the freedom of the press.
The murders in Paris are sickening. We stand with the French people in the fight against terror and defending the freedom of the press.— David Cameron (@David_Cameron) January 7, 2015
US: Josh Earnest, The White House Press Secretary said, "Everybody here at the White House are with the families of those who were killed or injured in this attack."
Italy: Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi posted on a social network,"Horror and dismay for the massacre of Paris."
He also said, "Italy totally stands with (French President) Francois Hollande and (Paris Mayor) Anne Hidalgo at this terrible time. Violence will always lose against freedom and democracy."