Gare du Nord: Armed police flood Paris station as knifeman 'threatens officers with blade' and causes panic

Mark Chandler
Knife: A French policeman patrols inside the Gare du Nord train station: AFP/Getty Images

A man has been arrested at a packed train station in Paris after allegedly threatening police with a knife.

Panic was caused at the Gare du Nord station as the incident unfolded on Saturday.

An SNCF spokesman said the man had approached gendarmes patrolling the train station.

He was told to lie down and followed the orders before he was arrested.

The scene led panic among passengers who tried to flee the scene, a witness claimed.

One wrote on Twitter: "Some sort of incident at Paris Gard du Nord and people ran in panic and had to hide in men's toilets."

Footage that appeared to be taken at the scene showed armed police swarming around the man as he lay on the ground.

Astonished passengers were ordered away by a policewoman carrying a gun.

Further images published online showed baggage scattered across the floor of the station after terrified passengers fled.

Trains were also delayed out of the station.

It occurred a day before France holds the first round of its presidential election.

The country is on alert following the killing of a policeman by an Isis extremist on Thursday.