An 86-year-old priest has been ‘beheaded’ by two ‘Islamic’ knifemen who cut his throat after bursting into a French church and taking nuns and worshippers hostage before being shot dead by police, DailyMail reports.
The attackers held the priest, Jacques Hamel, believed to be 86, two nuns and two parishioners hostage after they raided the Catholic church at Saint Etienne du Rouvray, Normandy at 9.45AM local time.
According to a local, a third nun escaped the attack and raised alarm.
Reports say one of the hostages is in critical condition at the hospital and one of the attackers was “dressed in Islamic clothing”.
The attackers held the hostages for about one hour before they were gunned down by police.
Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby condemning the attack said: “Evil attacks the weakest, denies truth and love, is defeated through Jesus Christ. Pray for France, for victims, for their communities.”
Authorities are searching the building for explosives.
The Vatican has described the attack as a “barbarous killing” made even worse as it was carried out in a “sacred place”.
French authorities are investigating the incident as a terrorist attack being that they received intel about plots to attack churches since April last year.