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Video: False alarm at vigil sends hundreds in Paris fleeing for their lives in sheer panic

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The city of Paris remains on edge following Friday’s bloody attack at the hands of Islamic extremists, and hundreds of people were sent fleeing in panic late Sunday in response to what reportedly may have been firecrackers.

Despite a state of emergency still in effect, which includes a ban on public demonstrations, people had gathered at Place de la Republique to hold a vigil for the victims of the attack when a sudden bang sent everyone scattering in sheer panic, thinking another attack was underway.

Channel 4 News reporter Matt Frei was broadcasting live from the square when the incident occurred:

Crowds run during live broadcast, ParisThis is the moment crowds start running from Place de la Republique after a scare that someone had been shot, as Matt Frei broadcasts live from Paris on Sunday. It turned out to be a false alarm.Watch his full live broadcast – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sq9vpgaBgzY&feature=youtu.be

Posted by Channel 4 News on Sunday, November 15, 2015

 

Police responded with guns drawn, but later gave the all clear, attributing the incident to a false alarm.

“When you see a crowd moving around a lot, you have to act because maybe there is somebody with a gun,” an officer told International Business Times.

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CNN’s Anderson Cooper and Christiane Amanpour were nearby when the incident occurred and went on-air to report on what they saw.

Here’s a video of their report, and additional video from Twitter capturing people fleeing:

Tom Tillison

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