updated 6/29/2008 3:21:04 PM ET 2008-06-29T19:21:04

French officials say 16 adults and children have been wounded at a military shooting demonstration when they were struck by real bullets instead of blanks.

The chief of the regional administration in Aude in southeast France says four of the injured Sunday are in serious condition. Most of the injured are civilians.

Speaking on France-3 television, Bernard Lemaire says the soldier who fired the shots has been detained. Lemaire says it was likely an accident but that it could have been a "criminal gesture."

The Defense Ministry says it is investigating why real bullets were used. It is not immediately clear what kind of weapon was used.

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