PARIS (AP) – The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for the shooting on Paris’ Champs Elysees that killed a police officer and left two others gravely wounded.
In a statement from its Amaq news agency, the group gave a pseudonym for the shooter indicating he was Belgian.
The attacker opened fire on a police van on the avenue before being killed.
The claim of responsibility came unusually swiftly for the group, which has been losing territory in Iraq and Syria.
And the pseudonym, Abu Yusuf al-Beljiki, indicated that the attacker already had ties of some sort to Islamic State extremists.
French President Francois Hollande says he is convinced the circumstances surrounding the attack on Paris police officers points to a terrorist act.
Hollande said after one officer was killed and two others seriously wounded on the grand Champs-Elysees boulevard Thursday night he is “convinced” the investigation indicates terrorism.
He did not elaborate.
Hollande says has convened a National Defense and Security Council to meet on Friday morning.
The council consists of top security, police and military officials and several members of government.