Charlie Hebdo standoff: Kouachi brothers killed - PHOTOSESSION

Charlie Hebdo standoff: Kouachi brothers killed - <span style="color: red;">PHOTOSESSION
# 09 January 2015 18:02 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. Special forces swoop on Charlie Hebdo suspects holed up in French village as 2nd operation gets under way at hostage-scene, APA reports quoting Anadolu Agency. The two Kouachi brothers wanted over the Charlie Hebdo massacre in Paris are reported to have been killed in a shoot-out at a building they were holed up in in a French village. French news agency reported the pair were dead after explosions and gunfire erupted at the scene of a standoff between police and Said Kouachi, 34, and Cherif Kouachi, 32. Blasts and heavy gunfire were heard and smoke was seen drifting from around the small printing business in the village of Dammartin-en-Goele, 25 miles (42 kilometers) northeast of Paris on Friday where the French Algerians had taken refuge.

Members of France's special security force, the National Gendarmerie Intervention Group (GIGN) were seen on the roof of the building and a helicopter landed at the scene. Reporters close to the scene said stun grenades were believed to have been thrown into the industrial building amid speculation a final assault on the pair was under way. Police earlier said they were in contact with the Kouachi brothers and Yves Albarello, the MP for Seine et Marne, told Itele the pair had vowed to fight to their deaths. The Interior Ministry referred to the operation as a "hostage situation", without disclosing details, and also warned local residents to stay at home.

At least two runways were closed at nearby Charles de Gaulle Airport as military and police helicopters flew in the skies above the village and local schools were evacuated. A salesman earlier told France Info radio that he had shaken hands with one of the suspects when the pair arrived at the printing business at 8.30 a.m. (0730GMT) on Friday morning.

'We don’t kill civilians'

The man, who gave his name as Didier, said he thought the man, who was dressed in black and heavily armed, was a special operations police officer.

He said he was told to leave, with the gunman saying: "Go, we don’t kill civilians."

"As I left I didn’t know what it was, it wasn’t normal. I did not know what was going on. Was it a hostage-taking or a burglary?" Didier added.

In a speech to the French public on Friday, President Francois Hollande praised "international solidarity" in the aftermath of the Charlie Hebdo attack.

La Figaro reported that the pair had told the driver of a car they hijacked that "if media asks you, you say we are al-Qaeda in Yemen".

Hundreds of police have been deployed around the village along with other security forces.

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