PARIS — Shootings and explosions erupted in the Paris area on Friday night, and French news services said at least 39 people were dead, dozens wounded and others taken hostage in what appeared to be coordinated militant attacks.
French television reported that one of at least two explosions had struck near Paris at the country’s main sports stadium, forcing the hasty evacuation of President François Hollande. The explosion occurred during a France-Germany soccer match.
The shooting broke out at a popular concert hall, The Bataclan, where a death metal band was playing, and the France 24 website said dozens of hostages had been taken there.
A witness quoted by BFM television said he heard rounds of automatic rifle fire and someone shouting “Allahu akbar!” at The Bataclan.
The police were ordering bystanders in the that area to get off the streets, French television reported.
Other news services and French television quoted the Paris police as saying 39 people had been killed in the 10th and 11th Arrondissements of Paris.
French news media reported that Kalashnikov rifles had been involved in the shootings — a favored weapon of militants who have attacked targets in France — and that many rounds had been fired.
The shootings occurred near the former headquarters of Charlie Hebdo, the satirical newspaper where shootings by Islamic militants in January traumatized France.
Police sirens sounded throughout central Paris on Friday night.