Gunfire and explosions have been heard at the printing plant north of Paris where Islamist suspects in Wednesday's massacre at satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo have been holed up for hours, followed by similar events at a kosher supermarket in Paris where the suspects' allies were holding hostages and demanding their safe passage.
It was not immediately clear whether there was a link between that gunman and the two suspects wanted for 12 killings at the Charlie Hebdo satirical weekly on Wednesday.
However a police source said the hostage-taker resembled the man suspected of killing a policewoman in a southern suburb of Paris on Thursday. That man in turn is believed to be a member of the same jihadist group as the two Charlie Hebdo suspects.
The exact number of hostages taken was unclear. Local media spoke of at least five. The police source said the man was equipped with automatic weapons.
Police immediately cordoned off the area and a helicopter was flying overhead.
North of the capital French anti-terrorist police sealed off a town and helicopters hovered overhead after a police source said the two men believed to have carried Wednesday's attack on the satirical Charlie Hebdo newspaper took at least one person hostage in a small print works.
Separately, Paris police named a man they were looking for in connection with Thursday's killing of a policewoman as 32 year-old Amedy Coulibaly. They said were also looking for a 26 year-old woman called Hayat Boumeddiene. They described both as armed and dangerous.
Original Story Fox Business