Four hostages, captor killed at Paris kosher store

The hostage situation at the kosher restaurant is believed to be linked to the Charlie Hebdo killing

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At least four hostages and their kidnapper at a Jewish supermarket east of the French capital were killed after security forces stormed the place on Friday, a police union source told Reuters.

Earlier, television images showed a group of hostages running out of the store.

Explosions and gunshots were heard moments after a similar raid on the building where two brothers suspected in the Charlie Hebdo newspaper massacre were cornered.

The gunman at the market had threatened to kill those inside if the brothers were harmed. An official described the events as "clearly linked," the Associated Press reported.

Earlier, the gunman told French TV he was member of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) militant group, according to Agence France-Presse.

The official said several people had been wounded when the gunman opened fire in the market Friday afternoon and were able to flee and get medical care.

A police source told AFP that the gunman knew at least one of the suspects in the Charlie Hebdo massacre.

Amedy Coulibaly, 32, wanted over the killing of a policewoman on Thursday, is believed to have links to Cherif Kouachi, also 32, one of the two men suspected of carrying out the Charlie Hebdo magazine massacre on Wednesday that killed 12.

Kouachi and Coulibaly were seen together in 2010 while visiting another jihadist Djamel Beghal, mastermind of a failed prison break-out plot.

Coulibaly was convicted for his part in the planned break and was well-known to anti-terrorist police. Charges against Kouachi were dropped in the case.

The man they were trying to break out was Algerian Islamist Smain Ait Ali Belkacem, who was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2002 for a bombing at the Musee d'Orsay metro station in Paris in October 1995 that left around 30 injured.

Police released a mugshot of Coulibaly and his wife Hayat Boumeddiene, 32.

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