Terror Attacks in France: The World Reacts
Last night, news of a horrific series of terror attacks in Paris, France, shook the world. The final death toll is unknown, but as of now, it is at 127, with over 300 injured. According to French authorities, there were eight attackers, all of whom are now dead. The attacks occurred at places of joy and celebration: like a soccer stadium, a concert hall, and restaurants. ISIL has taken responsibility for the acts of terror, although that claim has yet to be verified. However, the Islamic State claims that the attacks were in retribution for France’s involvement in Syria.
President Francois Hollande called the attacks by ISIL an “act of war.” He stated that they were:
Committed by a terrorist army, the Islamic State group, a jihadist army, against France, against the values that we defend everywhere in the world, against what we are: A free country that means something to the whole planet.
Shock, awe, compassion, and sadness still dominate the international conversation. Prominent world leaders have made statements in support of France, devoting aid and support in these horrible circumstances.
President Obama gave a brief statement in the White House briefing room on Friday night. He stated:
This is an attack not just on Paris, it’s an attack not just on the people France, but this is an attack on all of humanity and the universal values we share. We stand prepared and ready to provide whatever assistance that the government and the people of France need to respond.
British Prime Minister David Cameron echoed the same sentiments, pledging British support for France:
Shocked, but resolute. In sorrow, but unbowed. My message to the French people is simple: Nous sommes solidaires avec vous. Nous sommes tous ensemble. We stand with you. United.
Others who spoke against the attack included Pope Francis, who called the attacks a piece of the “piecemeal World War Three.” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pledged solidarity, and Russian President Vladimir Putin wrote to Hollande that the acts of terror were “proof of the barbarian nature of terrorism, which challenges the human civilization.”
The world also took to social media to show its support for the people of France–Facebook users are adorning their photos with a blue, white, and red filter, the colors of the French flag. Others took the time to share their thoughts on Twitter:
“When Paris turned off its lights, the rest of the world turned them on.” pic.twitter.com/Ed7uHzQtHq
— chilly (@billyganbold_) November 14, 2015
— Luis (@LuisANavia) November 14, 2015
Details are still coming out about the specifics of the attacks, as well as the ultimate response. For now, thoughts are with the people of Paris, as they struggle to get through this troubling time.