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The French authorities have launched a counter-terrorism inquiry after a man wielding a knife attacked a soldier of Operation Sentinelle patrolling the Chatelet metro station in Paris. "We don't know more about the intentions of the attacker who is arrested", Parly told local broadcaster Europe1. He wrestled the suspect to the ground, the Reuters report said.

The soldier quickly brought the man under control. Anti-terrorist prosecutors have been put in charge of the inquiry.

The soldiers' job is to protect vulnerable areas of the capital, including transport hubs such as Chatelet, which is used by thousands of commuters and tourists every day.

In April, a 39-year-old police officer was shot dead by an Isis supporter on the Champs Elysee, while in February another knife attacker was gunned.

The incident came with France still on high alert following a string of terror attacks which began in January 2015 when jihadist gunmen stormed the offices of satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, killing 12.

" The man has been mastered, this is proof of professionalism and efficiency of soldiers of "Sentinel" in this mission of protection, has responded to minister for armed forces, Florence Parly, on Europe 1".

Frances's armed forces minister say the soldier was not injured.

The incident, in which the soldier in question was not injured, was the latest of several attacks on troops deployed in large numbers to patrol sensitive places in France after a series of attacks by Islamist militants that have killed more than 230 people in France in the past three years.