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Heavy gunfire in north Paris; 13/11 mastermind Abdelhamid Abaaoud cornered?

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Paris: Shooting broke out in a northern suburb of Paris during an anti-terrorist police operation, sources said on Wednesday, five days after the worst attacks in French history that killed 129 people in the capital.

AFP quoted police sources as saying that the raid targeted suspected Paris attacks mastermind Abdelhamid Abaaoud.

At least one person has been reported dead in the anti-terror operation, sources added.

Suspects are still believed to be holed up in an apartment in the Paris suburb. The operation was still ongoing at 0615 AM local time (0515 GMT).

There was an exchange of gunfire during the operation in Saint-Denis at 4:25 AM on Wednesday morning, according to a source close to the investigation, who could not confirm who was targeted in the operation.

Another source said a special armed response unit took part in the raid.

Reports had earlier claimed that at least one police official was wounded in the operation.

Earlier, on Wednesday, two Air France flights en route to Paris from the United States were diverted due to bomb threats. An Airbus A-380 that departed from Los Angeles landed in Salt Lake City, where passengers and crew were being deplaned and transferred to the terminal.