Two men armed with knives 'shot dead after taking hostages in Normandy church' (UPDATE)

Other News Materials 26 July 2016 13:37 (UTC +04:00)

Headline changed, details added (first version posted on 12:54)

Two men armed with knives have reportedly been shot dead after taking several people hostage at a church in France, The Independent reported.

Local reports said the area around the church in the commune of Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray, near Rouen, had been cordoned off by armed units.

The two attackers have been “neutralised” by security forces, a spokesperson for France's Police Nationale said, adding that security assessments continued.

No further details of the operation were immediately given butNormandie 76 Actu reported that both suspects had been killed.

At least one of the hostages, who included a priest, was seen being evacuated on a stretcher.

France’s national police force issued a tweet urging people not to cross the security cordon or take photos or videos of the scene.