Police: Radicalized Muslim man shot dead after seizing soldier's gun at Paris Orly airport

PARIS, March 18 (Reuters) - Security forces shot dead a man who seized a soldier's gun at Paris Orly airport in France on Saturday soon after the same man shot and wounded a police officer during a routine police check, the interior minister said.

The man was known to police and intelligence services, Interior Minister Bruno le Roux told reporters. A police source described him as a radicalized Muslim but did not identify him by name.

The anti-terrorism prosecutor opened an investigation.

The man killed tried to snatch a gun from a female soldier "in an extremely violent attack," a French army spokesman said.

Benoit Brulon, a spokesman for France's anti-terror patrol force, said the female soldier was "doing fine."

The busy Orly airport south of Paris was evacuated and security forces swept the area for bombs to make sure the dead man was not wearing an explosive belt, but nothing was found, interior ministry spokesman Pierre-Henry Brandet told Reuters.

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Paris Orly airport evacuated after attack
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Paris Orly airport evacuated after attack
Repeating correcting date - A medical gurney is wheeled into Orly airport southern terminal after a shooting incident near Paris, France March 18, 2017. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Repeating correcting date - Police at Orly airport southern terminal after a shooting incident near Paris, France, March 18, 2017. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Repeating correcting date - Passengers wait at Orly airport southern terminal after a shooting incident near Paris, France March 18, 2017. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Repeating correcting date - Passengers pass emergency vehicles at Orly airport southern terminal after a shooting incident near Paris, France March 18, 2017. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Repeating correcting date - Passengers wait at Orly airport southern terminal after a shooting incident near Paris, France March 18, 2017. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
Repeating correcting date - Passengers wait at Orly airport southern terminal after a shooting incident near Paris, France March 18, 2017. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier
PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 18 : Police officers stand guard at Orly Airport, near Paris, France on March 18, 2017 following the shooting of a man by French security forces. Security forces at Paris' Orly airport shot dead a man who took a weapon from a soldier, the interior ministry said. (Photo by Mustafa Yalcin/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 18 : Police officers stand guard at Orly Airport, near Paris, France on March 18, 2017 following the shooting of a man by French security forces. Security forces at Paris' Orly airport shot dead a man who took a weapon from a soldier, the interior ministry said. (Photo by Mustafa Yalcin/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 18 : Police officers stand guard at Orly Airport, near Paris, France on March 18, 2017 following the shooting of a man by French security forces. Security forces at Paris' Orly airport shot dead a man who took a weapon from a soldier, the interior ministry said. (Photo by Mustafa Yalcin/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
French firefighters and RAID police unit officers secure Paris' Orly airport on March 18, 2017 following the shooting of a man by French security forces. Security forces at Paris' Orly airport shot dead a man who took a weapon from a soldier, the interior ministry said. Witnesses said the airport was evacuated following the shooting at around 8:30am (0730GMT). The man fled into a shop at the airport before he was shot dead, an interior ministry spokesman told AFP. He said there were no people were wounded in the incident. / AFP PHOTO / CHRISTOPHE SIMON (Photo credit should read CHRISTOPHE SIMON/AFP/Getty Images)
French Police RAID unit officers secure the grounds at Paris' Orly airport on March 18, 2017 following the shooting of a man by French security forces. Security forces at Paris' Orly airport shot dead a man who took a weapon from a soldier, the interior ministry said. Witnesses said the airport was evacuated following the shooting at around 8:30am (0730GMT). The man fled into a shop at the airport before he was shot dead, an interior ministry spokesman told AFP. He said there were no people were wounded in the incident. / AFP PHOTO / CHRISTOPHE SIMON (Photo credit should read CHRISTOPHE SIMON/AFP/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 18 : Passengers evacuated from Orly airport walk on the highway at Orly airport, near Paris, France on March 18, 2017 following the shooting of a man by French security forces. Security forces at Paris' Orly airport shot dead a man who took a weapon from a soldier, the interior ministry said. (Photo by Mustafa Yalcin/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 18 : Police officers stand guard at Orly Airport, near Paris, France on March 18, 2017 following the shooting of a man by French security forces. Security forces at Paris' Orly airport shot dead a man who took a weapon from a soldier, the interior ministry said. (Photo by Mustafa Yalcin/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
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"The man succeeded in seizing the weapon of a soldier. He was quickly neutralized by the security forces," Brandet said.

Noone else was injured at the airport.

Flights were suspended from both terminals of the airport and some flights were diverted to Charles de Gaulle airport north of the capital, airport operator ADP said.

Earlier, a police officer was shot and wounded by the same man during a routine traffic check in Stains, north of Paris.

The incidents came five weeks before France holds presidential elections in which national security is a key issue.

The country remains on high alert after attacks by Islamic State militants killed scores of people in the last two years -including coordinated bombings and shootings in Paris in November 2015 in which 130 people were killed. A state of emergency is in place until at least the end of July.

The attacks would have no impact on a trip to Paris by Prince William, second-in-line to the British throne, and his wife Kate, who are due to end a two-day visit to the French capital on Saturday, a British spokesman said.

The soldier whose gun the man tried to seize was a member of the army's "Sentinelle" operation responsible for patrolling airports and other key sites since January 2015 when Islamist attackers killed 12 people at the satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo. It was reinforced after the Paris attacks.

Around 3,000 passengers were evacuated from the airport, the second busiest in the country.

In March 2016, Islamic State claimed responsibility for suicide bomb attacks on Brussels airport and a rush-hour metro train in the Belgian capital which killed 35 people, including three suicide bombers. (Reporting by Gus Trompiz, Emmanuel Jarry, Brian Love, Bate Felix, Simon Carraud; Writing by Adrian Croft; editing by Richard Balmforth)

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