/Paris’ Notre Dame Cathedral is on fire

Paris’ Notre Dame Cathedral is on fire

The roof of Paris’ Notre Dame Cathedral collapsed as a massive fire ripped through the structure on Monday, days before Easter.

Paris Mayor Anne Hildago and firefighters warned people to stay away from the area. There have been no confirmed deaths, according to Paris police, while a French government official said no injuries had yet been reported. Four hundred firefighters are working to put out the blaze, according to the Ministry of the Interior for France.

The area surrounding the cathedral, Paris’ Ile de la Cite, is in the process of being evacuated, according to Reuters.

No injuries were reported in the early stages of the blaze. It was not immediately clear what had caused the fire, while local media reported that police in the city were treating it as an accident. The Paris Prosecutor’s office announced that it has started an inquiry into the fire.

Emergency services also attempted to salvage the artwork stored in the cathedral, which had been undergoing renovations.

The cathedral, which dates back to the 12th century and is famous for featuring in Victor Hugo’s classic novel “The Hunchback of Notre-Dame,” attracts millions of tourists every year.

President Emmanuel Macron will be going to the scene of the fire, according to an Elysee official. He mourned the landmark in a tweet.

He also canceled an address to the nation that he had been due to give later on Monday evening.

President Donald Trump, meanwhile, addressed the fire in a tweet early Monday afternoon.

Notre-Dame was in the midst of renovations, with some sections under scaffolding, while bronze statues were removed last week for works.

In a tweet the mayor of Paris confirmed the fire and called for people to remain away from the scene.

The President of the U.S. Bishops’ conference Daniel Cardinal DiNardo expressed his support for the people of Paris in a statement.

“The horrific fire that is engulfing the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris is shocking and saddens us all, for this particular cathedral is not only a majestic Church, it is also a world treasure,” he said, adding, “our hearts go out to the Archbishop and the people of Paris, and we pray for all the people of France, entrusting all to the prayers and intercession of the Mother of God, especially the firefighters battling the fire”

This story is developing. Please check back for updates.

–Reuters and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

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