Horrific shootings and bombings have rocked the French capitalby Josh Lowe / November 14, 2015 / Leave a comment
[This story was posted at 07.22 on Saturday and last updated at 10.03 on Monday. It was kept updated as news broke over the weekend but will now not be updated further as we work on other coverage]
[This piece draws extensively on Reuters, BBC and Guardian coverage as well as independent sources]
A string of co-ordinated terror attacks carried out by gunmen and bombers tore through Paris on friday, with at least 129 people killed and over 350 injured across the city. The situation is developing, with a major police investigation ongoing to identify the attackers and hunt down their accomplices. Here’s what is clear at this point:
Where were the attacks?
Late last Friday night, gunmen and suicide bombers stormed six venues around the city—four bars and restaurants in the 10th and 11th districts, the Bataclan concert hall, where rock band Eagles of Death Metal were playing a gig, and the area around the Stade de France football stadium, where three suicide bombers blew themselves up. The attacks took place over a three hour period. By far the bloodiest attack was that on the concert hall, where 89 people died after gunmen burst in to the building and took dozens hostage before blowing themselves up when security forces arrived. “It was a bloodbath,” witness Julien Pearce told CNN. “It was like a gust of wind in a wheat field. Everyone fell—dead, injured or alive,” another witness told France’s Liberation newspaper. The suicide bombers used the explosive triacetone triperoxide, according to the Paris prosecutor.
Tragically, on the night of the attacks, 1,000 emergency workers who responded to the Germanwings plane crash earlier this year were in the Stade de France on a special reward trip, according to the Guardian.
In this personal piece about his time living in the 11th, my colleague Jonathan Derbyshire writes: “The 11th is a symbol of Paris’s success—and that’s why, I suspect, the killers did their worst there. The 11th is where students and young professionals, the kinds of people who’d have been thronging the bars and cafés of the rue de Charonne last night, live cheek-by-jowl with “bourgeois…