PHOTOS: Paris suburb raid leaves 2 dead

  • Policemen are seen near the ‘Rue de la Republique’ on Nov. 18, 2015 in Saint-Denis, France. French Police special forces raided an apartment, hunting those behind the attacks that claimed 129 lives in the French capital five days ago.
  • French special forces and medical vehicles are seen on ‘Rue de la Republique’ on Nov. 18, 2015 in Saint-Denis, France. 
  • A French military officer keeps people behind a cordon as police participate in a raid in the city center of Saint Denis, near Paris, France, on Nov. 18, 2015.
  • Soldiers stand guard in the northern Paris suburb of Saint-Denis city center, on Nov. 18, 2015, as French Police special forces raid an apartment, hunting those behind the attacks that claimed 129 lives in the French capital five days ago. 
  • Members of the BRI, a special intervention unit of the French police, are pictured in combat position in the northern Paris suburb of Saint-Denis city center, on Nov. 18, 2015, as French Police special forces raid an apartment, hunting those behind the attacks that claimed 129 lives in the French capital five days ago.
  • French police stand in front of the door of the Eglise Neuve church as they secure the area during an operation in Saint-Denis, near Paris, on Nov. 18, 2015.
  • Armed police operate in Saint-Denis, a northern suburb of Paris, Nov. 18, 2015.
  • Policemen stand guard guard in the northern Paris suburb of Saint-Denis city center, on Nov. 18, 2015, as French Police special forces raid an apartment, hunting those behind the attacks that claimed 129 lives in the French capital five days ago.
  • French soldiers secure the area after shots were exchanged in Saint-Denis, France, near Paris, on Nov. 18, 2015.
  • Residents are evacuated by the police in Saint Denis, north of Paris, France, Nov. 18, 2015. Authorities in the Paris suburb of Saint Denis were telling residents to stay inside during a large police operation near France’s national stadium that two officials say is linked to last week’s deadly attacks.
  • Police operation in Saint-Denis, near Paris on Nov. 18, 2015, five days after Paris terror attacks. Shooting broke out in northern Paris early Nov. 18, 2015 during a dawn raid by police hunting those behind the attacks that claimed 129 lives in the French capital five days ago, sources said.
  • Police officers take up positions in Saint Denis, a northern suburb of Paris, Nov. 18, 2015.
  • French special police forces secure the area as shots are exchanged in Saint-Denis, France, near Paris, Nov. 18, 2015.
  • French military officers and police members participate in an raid in the city center of Saint Denis, near Paris, France, Nov. 18, 2015.

of

Updated

SAINT-DENIS, France — A woman blew herself up as elite French police raided an apartment while hunting high-level terrorism suspects wanted over last week’s Paris attacks, officials said.

Heavy gunfire was reported for several hours beginning around 4:30 a.m. local time (10:30 p.m. ET Tuesday) in the northern Paris suburb of Saint-Denis. Another person was also killed while seven others were arrested during the operation.

A woman detonated a suicide vest as the apartment was stormed, according to the Paris Prosecutor’s Office. It was not immediately clear how the second person died.

Five police officers and a passerby were injured during the incident. A police dog named Diesel was also killed.

Officials confirmed that Abdelhamid Abaaoud, a Belgian jihadist who is suspected of being a lynchpin in the assaults that killed 129 people in Paris on Friday, was one of several people targeted by the raid. However, it was not immediately clear whether Abaaoud was among those arrested or was ever in the apartment.

Several explosions could be heard around 7:30 a.m. local time (1:30 a.m. ET), about three hours into the operation. By 11:40 a.m. local time (5:40 a.m. ET), authorities confirmed that the assault was over.

Veronique Haounoh, 43, was holed-up in an apartment across the street from the operation with several neighbors and heard “explosions at irregular intervals.”

“We heard so many booms,” she told NBC News. “I’m shaking. We are very scared, I can’t stop crying.”

Additional reporting by Jake Cigainero and Richard Engel. 

Read the full story at NBCNews.com

Speak Out