Three people at Notre-Dame basilica in Nice, France, were killed Thursday in a knife attack that the mayor has labeled a terrorist attack.
A knife-wielding man nearly decapitated an elderly woman in the church, slit another person's throat, and injured a third person, who escaped to a bar but later died. Following the attack, the country has moved its national security alert system to its highest alert level.
Police shot the man and detained him. He survived the gunshot and reportedly yelled "Allahu Akbar" repeatedly while being detained. The Arabic phrase means "God is great."
"The meaning of his gesture left no doubt," said Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi, who wrote on Twitter that the killings seem to have been a terrorist attack.
Estrosi also called for action against "Islamo-fascism."
"Enough is enough," Estrosi said, according to Agence France-Presse. "It's time now for France to exonerate itself from the laws of peace in order to definitively wipe out Islamo-fascism from our territory."
The mayor compared the means of attack to the recent beheading of a teacher by an 18-year-old student, who reportedly killed the man for showing his class a cartoon depicting the Prophet Mohammad.
🔦 Recently, French President Emmanuel Macron defended publication of cartoons of the prophet. Since then, Muslims in some countries have engaged in demonstrations against France.