A Greek Orthodox priest has been shot and severely wounded by an attacker in the French city of Lyon.
The Christian clergyman, who has not yet been identified, was locking up his church when the gunman struck at around 4pm on Saturday.
‘The gunman shot the priest twice in the stomach and then ran away,’ said an investigating source.
‘The victim was rushed to hospital with life threatening stomach wounds and is in intensive care.’
In turn, the gunman was described as ‘male and in his forties’. He is thought to have fired his weapon twice.
It follows an Islamist terrorist murdering three people in a Catholic basilica in Nice, in the South of France, on Thursday.
Brahim Aoussaoui, a 21-year-old Tunisian, survived despite being shot 14 times by police, and is currently under armed guard in a secure hospital wing.
French President Emmanuel Macron immediately declared France ‘under attack’ following disturbing incidents related to extremists targeting Christians.
The attacks come amid fury across the Islamic and Arab world at President Macron for defending satirical cartoons mocking the Prophet Mohammed and the Muslims who revere him.
During a visit to emergency service personnel in Nice on Thursday, Mr Macron said: ‘We won’t give in. Once again, our country has been hit by an Islamist terrorist attack.
‘Once again, this morning, it was three of our compatriots who fell, in Nice, in this basilica. Very clearly, it is France that is under attack.’
The nature of the Nice attack was the same as that used to kill school teacher Samuel Paty in the Paris suburb of Conflans Sainte Honorine earlier this month.
Mr Paty was beheaded by an 18-year-old Chechen refugee after the teacher showed the Charlie Hebdo cartoons to children.
Mr Macron had placed 4000 extra soldiers on the streets of France, in part to protect churches and other places of worship.