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French Customs Officer Killed During Operation Targeting Arms Traffickers

The French government had said it would be clamping down on arms trafficking in the wake of the attacks on Paris.

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A French customs officer was killed during an operation targeting arms traffickers Monday in Toulon, a coastal city in the south of France, officials have said.

Another customs agent and a police officer were injured during the operation, according to a statement posted on the French finance ministry's website.

The French government announced it would crack down on arms trafficking in the wake of the Paris attacks that left 130 dead earlier this month.

The officials were undercover, posing as couriers delivering a shipment containing weapon parts that was being imported from another country when they were shot, Reuters reported. The gunman was arrested nearby as he attempted to flee.

Marseille prosecutor Brice Robin said the shooting was not linked to terrorism, according to Reuters.

Finance Minister Michael Sapin and Budget Secretary Christian Eckert released this statement: "The ministers welcome the courage and commitment of customs and police officials in these dramatic circumstances and pay tribute to their dedication to protect our land and our citizens.

"The ministers extend their support and sympathy to their families and have expressed their solidarity with fellow officers who were also targeted."

Alicia Melville-Smith is a homepage editor and reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Alicia Melville-Smith at

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