For the most up-to-date news, French journalist Marc Weitzmann is live-blogging from the scene of the hostage crisis in Porte de Vincennes, Paris. (Weitzmann will be writing more on the unfolding crisis in France next week.)
At least two people have been killed in a hostage situation underway at a kosher grocery store in Porte de Vincennes in Paris. According to reports, the suspect has been identified as Amedy Coulibaly and his accomplice Hayet Boumddiene, the suspects behind yesterday’s shooting of a female police officer in Montrouge, Paris.
At least five people are believed to be held, some of them wounded.
BREAKING: Police order all shops closed in famed Jewish neighborhood in central Paris far from attacks.
— The Associated Press (@AP) January 9, 2015
Kosher supermarkets in Paris have become something of a symbol in recent years. A kosher supermarket in Sarcelles, a heavily Jewish suburb of Paris, was targeted with explosive device in 2012 in the wake of Charlie Hebdo’s publication of cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad. This summer, as anti-Israel—and anti-Semitic—sentiment flared in France during the Israeli operation in Gaza, a kosher grocery was set on fire during a riot in Sarcelles. In August, a U.K. supermarket briefly pulled its kosher food shelves, fearing damage by anti-Israel protestors outside.
Update: The hostage situation has ended. Three hostages and three policemen were killed, and alleged hostage-taker Amedy Coulibaly is dead.