Trump on Paris Attack: "It Just Never Ends"

Donald Trump - Press Conference April 2017 - Getty H 2017
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The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the Thursday shooting on Paris' famed Champs Elysees.

Ahead of the Islamic State group claiming responsibility for the shooting on Paris' Champs Elysees on Thursday, President Donald Trump said the fatal shooting in Paris looked "like another terrorist attack."

It was unclear how Trump concluded that terrorism was a factor, as Paris police had yet to announce a motive when Trump commented from the White House during his joint press conference with Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni.

Trump also offered condolences from the U.S. to the people of France.

"Again it's happening, it seems," said Trump, adding that the attack is a "very, very terrible thing that's going on today."

He continued: "It looks like another terrorist attack. What can you say? It just never ends. We have to be strong and we have to be vigilant, and I've been saying it for a long time." 

The claim of responsibility came unusually swiftly for the group about the attack that killed a police officer and left two others gravely wounded Thursday. The attacker opened fire on a Paris police van on the avenue before being killed. A French government spokesman said the assailant was armed with an automatic firearm akin to a "war weapon."

In a statement from its Amaq news agency, the group gave a pseudonym for the shooter indicating he was Belgian.

Interior Ministry spokesman Pierre-Henry Brandet said no tourists or pedestrians were injured.

French President Francois Hollande said he convened a National Defense and Security Council to meet on Friday morning. The council consists of top security, police and military officials and several members of government.

The shooting happened as the country is under a state of emergency from a series of extremist attacks and came three days before the first round of balloting in France's presidential election.