PARIS — Armed gunmen held up a Primark clothing store  Monday morning at the Qwartz mall in Villeneuve-la-Garenne, just north of Paris.

“It started around 6:30 this morning, with about 10 hostages taken, although at this point it is unclear whether they were taken deliberately or just hid in the store. Special forces intervened at the scene and ended the situation,” a spokesperson for the local police told WWD, noting 18 people had been evacuated.

According to the spokesperson, the perpetrators are still at large.

“Police are in attendance and media inquiries are being referred to them,” a spokesperson for Primark told WWD, adding: “We will do all we can to support our staff and their families. We hope for a speedy and safe end to this incident.”

The mall resumed business soon after the intervention, though the Primark boutique remains closed, according to the mall’s reception desk.

The armed robbery took place a day ahead of Bastille Day celebrations, which are expected to occur under heavy security six months after the Charlie Hebdo shootings.

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