Hollande Calls Islamic State Attacks in Paris “Act of War”

The Islamic State claims responsibility for attacks that President François Hollande calls “an act of war.”

The French flag is seen at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, November 11
The French flag is seen at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, November 11 (Elysée)

The Islamic State militant group claimed responsibility on Saturday for attacks in Paris a day earlier that left at least 127 people dead.

President François Hollande called the attacks “an act of war.”

“All measures to protect our compatriots and our territory are being taken within the framework of the state of emergency,” he said.

Hollande declared a national state of emergency — the first in half a century — on Friday night and deployed 1,500 army reinforcements to Paris. France’s borders were also closed to prevent the terrorists escaping.

Officials said there had been two suicide bombings outside the Stade de France where Hollande was watching a football match. They were the first suicide attacks in French history.

A witness said one of the detonations blew people into the air outside a McDonald’s restaurant opposite the stadium.

Five more attacks occurred in and near the 11th arrondissement, a district on the Right Bank of the River Seine that is known for its nightlife. Several restaurants were targeted.

The deadliest attack happened in the Bataclan concert call in the area. At least 87 young people attending a rock concert died there when two or three gunmen started shooting indiscriminately into the crowd.

An official told the Associated Press that the attackers also tossed explosives into the packed theater.

They apparently blew themselves up when anti-terror units stormed the building.

Friday’s was the worst terrorist attack in Europe since the Madrid train bombings of 2004 in which 191 died.

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