Donald Trump has weighed in with some advice for Parisian firefighters battling a blaze at the Notre Dame cathedral.
"So horrible to watch the massive fire at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. Perhaps flying water tankers could be used to put it out. Must act quickly!" Mr Trump tweeted.
Officials were not immediately certain what could have started the flames, but believed it may have been a product of building maintenance. Regardless, th blaze prompted a major response from fire fighters and emergency workers who cleared the immediate surroundings of the 850-year-old cathedral.
In response to Mr Trump's idea, officials with the French civil security agency said that "all means" of firefighting were deployed to stop the blaze — except dropping water, which the French defence agency said could have caused the entire structure to collapse.
As those efforts to tame the blaze got underway, President Emmanuel Macron announced that he was cancelling a planned address to the nation.
Pictures and videos taken by bystanders and journalists at the scene showed virtually the entire roof of the building caught in flames, with a massive plume of smoke extending up into the sky.
Many posters on social media expressed sadness that the iconic landmark in the centre of the city was in flames.
Meanwhile, others noted that the church had been nearly destroyed before.
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