PARIS — The iconic Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris caught fire Monday, police said.
“Notre Dame Fire in progress,” police said on Twitter. “Avoid the area and facilitate the passage of emergency vehicles and intervention of the @prefpolice.”
Images showed a large plume of smoke billowing near its spire.
A man who has been arrested following fires at three historically black churches is the son of a sheriff’s deputy who authorities believe may have been influenced by “black metal music”.
Governor Jon Bel Edwards announced that 21-year-old Holden Matthews had been arrested in connection to those fires, which impacted three churches over a ten day period.
The medieval cathedral was completed in the 13th Century and today, with its towers, spire, flying buttresses and stained glass, is considered a feat of architecture as much as a religious symbol.
It is one of Paris’ most popular attractions, drawing an estimated 13 million visitors a year.
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