Paris attack: Police detains family members of gunmen

Reuters

"It's too early to say how or whether he was connected to what happened on the Champs Elysees", ministry spokesman Pierre-Henry Brandet said.

Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said security forces, including elite units, were fully mobilised ahead of Sunday's presidential poll.

Two French officials said the gunman had been detained towards the end of February after speaking threateningly about the police, but he was then released due to a lack of evidence.

It is not certain whether the attack, in which a police officer was shot dead and two seriously injured, was terror-related, but French President Francois Hollande described it as "terrorist in nature".

Ms Le Pen used the aftermath of the Champs-Elysees attack - which Islamic State has claimed it carried out - to call for the government to immediately expel foreigners being monitored by intelligence services and reinstate France's borders.

He further emphasized that unfortunately, the West's policy of appeasement toward "criminal terrorists" and its support for them, which indicates the West's double-standard approach toward the issue of terrorism, has emboldened the terrorists to launch another attack at the heart of Europe.

Candidates in France's presidential election treaded carefully in response to the attack with the first round of voting set for Sunday.

Mr Turnbull says regional security would be among the topics he would be discussing with USA vice president Mike Pence in Sydney on Friday.

France's interior ministry said the gunman was killed after opening fire on the officers at around 9:00 pm (1900 GMT) on the boulevard.

Asked about the Abu Yusuf Al-Beljiki pseudonym given by ISIS, Jambon said he "is certainly not the guy who committed the crime". Two police officers told AP the attacker had been flagged as an extremist, but offered no further details.

The man, named in reports as Karim Cheurfi, got out of a auto on the Champs-Élysées on Thursday night and started shooting.

The warning was circulated more widely among French security services in the hour following the Champs Elysees attack. "We just see police cars and vans with flashing lights, helicopters overhead".

The state of emergency was recently extended until the 2017 French presidential elections, which start this weekend, are finished.

On Friday, French authorities said a suspect sought by Belgium police, who was suspected of having planned to travel to France on Thursday, had handed himself in at a police station in the Belgian city of Antwerp.

ISIS claims responsibility and may have been directly involved rather than just inspiring the attack.

Macron said he canceled campaign stops out of a sense of "decency" and to allow police to concentrate their resources on the attack investigation.

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