On Tuesday evening, a gunman opened fire on the Christmas market in Strasbourg, France, killing three people and injuring at least eleven. Several of the injured are in a critical condition.

The Straits Times says the gunman ‘crossed the Pont du Corbeau, one of the bridges that lead to the historic centre of Strasbourg, and opened fire in the Rue des Orfèvres .’ The historic Christmas market has around 300 stalls and is a major tourist attraction.

The attacker has been identified as locally born Cherif Chekatt, who was known to authorities. He was shot by police but managed to escape – a large operation is underway to find him. CNN reports that he ‘has an extensive criminal background that includes 27 convictions in France, Germany, and Switzerland, …mainly for acts of robbery and violence.’

The national security level has been raised as a result of the attack, and increased border controls are in place.

Travel advice

  • Follow the instructions from the local authorities.
  • Check in with your friends and family online.
  • Make sure you are registered with your local embassy, so that they can contact you in case of emergency.
  • Expect delays and disruption if you are attempting to travel in areas that are affected by the incident.
  • Make sure you have the contact information of your travel insurance company and your local embassy stored in a secure offline location.
  • Monitor local media. If you are using Twitter to search, add the term ‘filter:verified’ to the search bar to see results from verified accounts only.

Individuals and groups with bad intentions often exploit the emotion aftermath of a terror attack. There can be a lot of fake news and/or hatred shared on social media. Please consider the source of information before sharing it or taking it to heart.

Official travel advice

From the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Following a shooting incident in the city of Strasbourg in north-eastern France on the evening of 11 December, the attacker remains unaccounted for. A large police and gendarmerie operation (with military reinforcements) remains underway in the city of Strasbourg and surrounding areas. You should exercise caution and follow the advice of the French authorities at all times.

Please click through here for more information, including contact details.

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