Priest shot at, critically injured outside church in France’s Lyon, police launch manhunt for attacker

Priest shot at, critically injured outside church in France’s Lyon, police launch manhunt for attacker. French Police confirmed that a Greek Orthodox priest was shot and injured in the city of Lyon on Saturday. The priest, whose name is yet to be disclosed, was attacked at a church in the French city of Lyon by an assailant who then fled.

The priest was fired at twice around 4 pm when he was shutting the church, according to news agency Reuters. Another report by the Associated Press suggests that the attacker used a hunting rifle, adding that the priest is being treated at a local hospital after being hit in the abdomen.

Preliminary inputs also indicate that French Police have launched a manhunt to identify and capture the attacker.

“An event is underway close to the Jean-Macé sector, in the 7th arrondissement in #Lyon. Security and rescue forces are there. A security perimeter has been installed,” the French interior ministry said in a tweet.

This attack on the priest is the latest in a progression of crimes that have been reported from France in recent weeks. Just earlier this week, a woman was beheaded and two others killed at a church in the French city of Nice.

Earlier in October, the beheading of a schoolteacher in a Paris suburb triggered sharp reactions from French President Emmanuel Macron and a host of other world leaders. Police later arrested the attacker, an 18-year-old Chechen who killed teacher Samuel Paty allegedly for indicating a cartoon of Prophet Mohammad in class.

Facing criticism over his remarks, French President Emmanuel Macron said in a tweet in Arabic on Saturday, “Contrary to much of what I have heard and seen on social media in recent days, our country generally approves of any religion. All of these religions are freely practiced on his land. There is no stigmatization: France is committed to peace and to live respectively.”

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