The tragic terrorist attacks that left over 120 people dead in Paris, France on Friday night have shocked the world. Amidst the chaos created by the attacks, people around the world have anxiously read and watched the news to find out all they can about this horrible tragedy.
Here are five things you should know about the attacks:
One: Where the attacks occurred. The terrorists attacked two crowded venues, one a sports stadium, the other a concert hall. Time.com reports that the terrorists targeted the Stade de France where the French played the Germans in a soccer match. The other major site of the attacks was the Bataclan theatre where many were gathered to see a heavy metal concert.
According to Time.com, in addition to these two venues, attacks were also reported at the Le Petit Cambrodge restaurant and Le Carillon bar, which are right across the street from each other. Shots were also reported nearby, at the La Belle Equipe cafe. Authorities say shots were also fired at a sixth, undisclosed location.
Two: The death toll. ABC News has called the Paris terrorist attacks “the deadliest single incident in French history since the Second World War.” Some sources say the death toll was 120, while others say it is as high as 132, in addition to hundreds of people who are injured. All sources say the death toll was over 100 individuals. At least one victim was an American citizen who was spending a semester studying abroad in France.
CNN.com reports that eight of the attackers were killed, seven in suicide bombs. The Bataclan concert venue saw the worst carnage, with at least 80 being killed there. French officials are currently in the midst of efforts to find and apprehend the other perpetrators of the attacks.
Three: ISIS claimed responsibility for the attacks. The Islamic terrorist group has warned that there will be more consequences if France continues with its current political policies.
A statement by the terrorist group said the purpose of the attacks was: “To teach France, and all nations following its path, that they will remain at the top of Islamic State’s list of targets, and that the smell of death won’t leave their noses as long as they partake in their crusader campaign.”
Four: How the attacks affect the rest of the world. World leaders from Pope Francis, to France’s President Hollande to President Obama have condemned the attacks, although in his remarks, Obama did not mention the Islamic State. President Hollande has called the attacks "an act of war.”
In response to the attacks, people around the world offered up prayers and condolences to the people of France. The European Council of the European Union held a minute of silence in memory of the victims. Many Facebook users changed their profile pictures to pictures of France’s flag and many prominent buildings were lit with the colors of France’s flag to show support of the French.
Five. Stories of tragedy but also bravery. Not far behind in the wake of the attacks came reports of self-sacrifice and bravery. USA Today provides a number of stories and information about many of the victims. A young woman named Isobel Bowdery, in a Facebook post that went rival, shared in gripping detail about her experience at the concert at the Bataclan. Bowdery thought she had lost her boyfriend in the tragedy only to find out later that he survived.
In a CNN.com video, Parisians are shown holding a candlight vigil for victims and proclaiming that, though shocked by the tragedy, they “are not afraid.” Officials have told people to stay inside, but many continue to be out in the public square, showing that they will not cower in fear and allow the attackers to win.
Photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons
Publication date: November 16, 2015