Flames break out next to theatre in Paris

Firefighters use a cherry picker to battle flames from a building next to the theatre, but say no one is hurt

A blaze has broken out next to the Place de L’Opera in central Paris.

Firefighters using a cherry picker used a hose line to tackle the flames in a building that was directly next to the theatre.

But officials were at a loss to say what may have caused the fire.

The Place de L’Opera is one of the city’s oldest theatres.

One witness said the thick black smoke could be seen from several miles away.

The square is located in the heart of the city’s central La Defense business district, which is home to a number of banking and technology companies.

Firefighters at the scene. Photograph: Bertrand Langlois/AFP/Getty Images

Evacuations and a clearance of the square was under way, but there were no reported injuries.

Umbrellas had been spotted on the walls of buildings nearby, but were confiscated by police at the scene.

La Opera de Paris, which first opened in 1820, has undergone a recent restoration.

The former square, which had gone largely unused, was revived as a square with cafes and public transport links after the revival of an elevated Metro line.

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