World leaders’ condemn horror at Nice attack
At least 84 people were killed as they watched a Bastille Day fireworks display, in what French President Francois Hollande called a “terrorist” attack. More than 50 children were among those hospitalised.
Following are the main reactions:
US PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: “We stand in solidarity and partnership with France, our oldest ally, as they respond to and recover from this attack.
“On this Bastille Day, we are reminded of the extraordinary resilience and democratic values that have made France an inspiration to the entire world.”
US PRESIDENTIAL HOPEFUL HILLARY CLINTON: “Every American stands in strong solidarity with the people of France, and we say with one voice: we will not be intimidated. We will never allow terrorists to undermine the egalitarian and democratic values that underpin our very way of life.”
GERMAN CHANCELLOR ANGELA MERKEL: “Germany stands alongside France in the fight against terrorism. Words can barely express the bond between us and our French friends.”
UN SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN KI-MOON, according to a UN statement, “stands firmly behind the French government and people as they confront this threat and stresses the need to intensify regional and international efforts to combat terrorism and violent extremism.”
BRITISH PRIME MINISTER THERESA MAY: “We are shocked and concerned by the scenes there. Our thoughts are with all those affected by this terrible incident on what was a day of national celebration.”
CANADIAN PRIME MINISTER JUSTIN TRUDEAU: “Canadians are shocked by tonight’s attack in Nice. Our sympathy is with the victims, and our solidarity with the French people.”
CHINESE PREMIER LI KEQIANG offered his “condolences” to the victims and said China opposed all forms of terrorism.
UN SECURITY COUNCIL: “(A) barbaric and cowardly attack… the perpetrators of these acts (need to be brought) to justice”.
ITALIAN PRIME MINISTER MATTEO RENZI: “There is a moral duty to react. Italy and the international community undertake not to leave the French on their own. The images coming out of Nice make words stick in the throat, fingers halt on the keyboard. Pain, emotion, solidarity.”
NATO: “This attack targeted innocent people and the core values for which NATO stands. But terrorism will never defeat democracy, freedom and our open societies.”
THE VATICAN: “We condemn in the strongest terms all manifestations of homicidal madness, hatred, terrorism and every attack against peace.”
RUSSIAN PRESIDENT VLADIMIR PUTIN: “Russia stands in solidarity with the people of France… we have seen once again that terrorism is completely blind to human morality.”
EUROPEAN COUNCIL PRESIDENT DONALD TUSK: “A sad day for France, for Europe… tragic… that the subjects of the attack were people celebrating liberty, equality and fraternity.”
EUROPEAN COMMISSION CHIEF JEAN-CLAUDE JUNCKER: “France can count on the European Commission to continue to support the fight against terrorism both inside and outside the EU. Our resolve will remain as firm as our unity.”
ASIA-EUROPE SUMMIT STATEMENT in Mongolia: “We strongly condemn the heinous and cowardly terrorist attacks…We reaffirm our commitment to join forces to fight the plague of terrorism and underline the need to bring to justice those responsible for the attacks.”
BRAZILIAN INTERIM PRESIDENT MICHEL TEMER: “Today, more than ever, we are all French.”
MUSLIM AND MIDEAST LEADERS also issued condemnations.
Sunni Islam’s leading centre of learning, AL-AZHAR, said the “vile terrorist attack” contradicted Islam and called for “uniting efforts to defeat terrorism and rid the world of its evil,” while the FRENCH COUNCIL OF THE MUSLIM FAITH (CFCM) said it “utterly condemned” the bloodshed.
IRAN called the attack a “criminal terrorist incident,” its arch-rival SAUDI ARABIA blasted a “heinous terrorist” act and the six Arab states in the GULF COOPERATION COUNCIL said the perpetrators had been “stripped of all moral and human values.”
“The Gulf Cooperation Council states stand in solidarity with the French republic following this cowardly criminal incident whose perpetrators have been stripped of all moral and human values,” the bloc’s secretary general, Abdullatif al-Zayani, said.
Regional heavyweight SAUDI ARABIA issued its own statement condemning the “heinous terrorist” act, adding that it stands in “solidarity” with France and will “cooperate with it in confronting terrorist acts in all their forms.”
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed al-Nahyan said: “This heinous terrorist crime makes it imperative for all to work decisively and without hesitation to counter terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.”
TUNISIA said that the attacker, who police said held joint French-Tunisian citizenship, had committed an act of “extreme cowardice” and expressed solidarity with France against the “scourge of terrorism.”
EGYPT President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi denounced “in the strongest terms the vile terrorist attack,” his office said. ARAB LEAGUE chief Ahmed Abul Gheit condemned the “craven terrorist attack,” his spokesman said.