Small blast in French city of Lyon wounds 7; cause unclear

FILE - In this Thursday, Feb. 28, 2019 file photo, France's Wendie Renard controls the ball during their women's international friendly soccer match against Germany at Francis-le-Basser stadium in Laval, western France. With an experienced side featuring seven players from the Lyon side which recently won the Champions League for the fourth straight year, host France will be among the favorites for the Women's World Cup. Among the seven Lyon players coach Corinne Diacre can count on are imposing center half Wendie Renard and midfield schemer Amandine Henry, who will captain France. (AP Photo/David Vincent, file)

French local officials say an explosion on a busy street in the city of Lyon has injured seven people

LYON, France — An explosion Friday on a busy pedestrian street in the French city of Lyon injured seven people, local officials said.

The cause of the blast that occurred in or outside a branch of the bakery chain Brioche Doree wasn't immediately clear, according to Kamel Amerouche, the regional authority's communications chief. Authorities couldn't confirm French media reports that a small package had exploded.

The victims sustained leg injuries that weren't life-threatening, Amerouche told The Associated Press.

Live television images showed the Brioche Doree sign intact and police vans and an ambulance on the street, which had been cordoned off. The central area, the Presqu'ile, lies between the Rhone and Saone rivers that run through France's third-largest city.

Resident Jean-Pierre, who lives above the bakery and didn't give his last name, told BFMTV the noise from the explosion was "deafening" but it didn't cause the walls to shake. He said one window shattered and there was some debris on the street.

French President Emmanuel Macron called it an "attack" during a live interview about the European Parliament elections that run through Sunday, but the president of greater Lyon, David Kimelfeld, urged calm.

"We must remain prudent and wait for the analysis of the circumstances and not panic the Lyon population," Kimelfeld said on BFMTV.

Earlier, French officials said eight people were wounded, but later lowered the figure to seven.

The women's World Cup soccer tournament is scheduled to start in France on June 7. Lyon will host the semifinals, and then the final on July 7.

French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said in a tweet that he has sent instructions for Lyon authorities to strengthen "the security of public sites and sporting, cultural and religious events."

Macron sent his thoughts "to the injured and their families."

French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe cancelled an appearance at a European elections-related meeting in Paris over the Lyon explosion.

You may also like these

Boca, River draw 2-2 in first leg of Libertadores...

Nov 11, 2018

Boca Juniors and River Plate drew 2-2 Sunday in the delayed first leg of the Copa Libertadores final

China hopes teenager could become first male...

Jan 27, 2017

In China, the women have enjoyed all the success in tennis, winning Grand Slam titles, Olympic gold...

Australia to host Syria in Sydney in World Cup...

Sep 6, 2017

Sydney to host World Cup qualifier between Australia and Syria on Oct. 10

Aussies end war-torn Syria's World Cup hopes in...

Oct 10, 2017

War-torn Syria's hopes of qualifying for the World Cup have ended in a 2-1 extra-time loss to...

World Cup spy: Honduras accuses Aussies of clumsy...

Nov 14, 2017

Honduras coach Jorge Luis Pinto has accused Australia of an "embarrassing" espionage attempt after...

Sign up now!