Five held over Paris Monet attack

Other News Materials 10 October 2007 00:09 (UTC +04:00)

( BBC ) - French police have made five arrests over an attack on a painting by Claude Monet in Paris, France's AFP news agency says, quoting judicial sources.

A gang of intruders broke into Paris' Musee D'Orsay overnight on Sunday and punched a hole in the Impressionist painting Le Pont d'Argenteuil.

France's Culture Minister called the vandalism an attack on French heritage.

It is the latest incident that has highlighted security problems at French cultural institutes.

Le Pont d'Argenteuil, painted in 1874, depicts moored sailing boats and a bridge on the Seine. It is part of a major collection of Impressionist works housed in the Musee d'Orsay gallery.

Security cameras caught footage of four or five people breaking into the Musee d'Orsay via a back door early on Sunday.

An alarm sounded but the apparently drunken group fled after punching a 10cm (four inch) hole in the famous work of art.

Four men and a young woman were questioned early on Tuesday and taken into custody, said AFP, citing a source close to the investigation.