PARIS – A gunman reportedly fired shots, critically injuring two people, outside of a supermarket in Port-Marly, a western suburb of Paris, on late Monday morning.
At about 11:45 a.m. CET time, the lone gunman in his sixties opened fire, hitting a man and a woman in front of a Super U shop, then barricaded himself inside of his home. French SWAT teams took him into custody at around 4 p.m., according to press reports here.
The event unfolded place at an awkward time for Paris, which is on the eve of the start of its fashion week.
Security already stands at the highest level in France’s capital, following the spate of attacks there last year, which have helped dampen its tourist trade.
As reported, while the city remained the first touristic destination in the world in 2015 with 16 million visitors, the Nov. 13 attacks continue to weigh on visitor levels today. Occupancy rate of foreign guests in hotels was down 10 points in the first half of this year, and it declined 12 points and 20 points in July and in August, respectively – following the July 14 attack in Nice.
Sales of women’s ready-to-wear in France have also been negatively affected, in part due to the terrorist acts. The business hit a three-year low in the first six months of 2016, when the women’s apparel activity retreated 2.8 percent in sales terms to 4.9 billion euros, or $5.47 billion at average exchange, and 2.9 percent on a unit basis, versus the same prior-year period, according to the French Women’s Ready-to-Wear Federation. Overall clothing sales in France, including men’s wear and children’s wear, declined 1.6 percent.
A film promoting the City of Light as a go-to destination, directed by Jalil Lespert, was unveiled last week by Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, who was joined by a bevy of company chiefs.