AS IT HAPPENED: We are at war, says Hollande
The Local · 16 Nov 2015, 17:42
Published: 16 Nov 2015 16:27 GMT+01:00
Updated: 16 Nov 2015 17:42 GMT+01:00
- What state of emergency means for France (19 Nov 15)
- Brussels police raids end without finding wanted jihadist
- Five of the seven attackers now identified
- French police carry out 168 raids across the country
- Arsenal of weapons seized including rocket launcher
- 23 arrests made across the country
- Mastermind of Paris attacks named as Abdelhamid Abaaoud
- French Prime Minister warns 'more attacks being planned'
- Hunt continues for suspected accomplice Salah Abdeslam
- France falls silent to honour victims: Images here
18:57 - Blog closed until Tuesday
That's it for The Local's coverage of the Paris terror attacks on Monday. We will be covering ongoing developments as they happen, so stay tuned. Thanks for reading.
The Eiffel Tower, closed since Friday's terrorist attacks, reopened to the public on Monday afternoon and will be lit up in the colours of the French flag for three nights.
17:46 - Here's a short recap of Hollande's speech
President François Hollande said Monday France would step up the battle against Isis in Syria in the wake of Paris attacks he dubbed "acts of war".
Hollande told an exceptional meeting of both houses of parliament that he would meet US President Barack Obama and Russia's Vladimir Putin in the coming days and called for a UN Security Council meeting over the fight against Isis jihadists.
A grave Hollande said the attacks in the French capital that killed 129 people as they enjoyed a Friday night out in bars, restaurants, a concert hall and the national stadium "were acts of war".
They "were decided and planned in Syria, prepared and organized in Belgium and perpetrated on our soil with French complicity," he said.
In response, France would "intensify" operations in Syria, Hollande said, a day after French jets pounded Isis targets in the group's Syrian stronghold of Raqa, its first military response to the Paris carnage.
"We will continue the strikes in the weeks to come," Hollande told lawmakers.
In the fight against the extremists, Hollande said he wanted increased international assistance.
"I will meet in the coming days with US President Obama and President Putin," he said.
Turning to measures within France, he said he would ask parliament to consider extending a state of emergency by three months.
17:42 - What does the state of emergency mean for France?
President Hollande said on Monday that he wanted to extend France's national state of emergency from 12 days to three months. But what does that mean for you?
17:03 - Spine-tinging anthem at end of speech
17:01 - Hollande to talk with Obama and Putin in coming days
Hollande is clearly hoping to win international support in the battle against Isis. He was at pains to stress that this was not just an attack against France "but the whole world".
In light of that, he will hold talks with Obama and Putin in the coming days. Russia and France of course have huge differences over what the solution in Syria should be. While France sees President Assad as part of the problem, Russia sees the dictator as part of the solution.
17:00 - 'The Republic will destroy terrorism'
Hollande: "The faces of those who died and were injured, and of their families, they haunt my mind. These memories are reinforcing my resolution in our determination to fight terrorism.
Hollande said he wants a rapid implementation of "coordinated and systematic controls" on EU's external and internal borders.
"If Europe does not control its external borders, then it's back to national borders. This would be the dismantling of the European Union".
16:47 - Hollande wants to change the constitution
The president wants to change the constitution so the country can better defend itself from terrorism. Any change in the constitution will have to be given the green light by parliament.
He wants the constitution changed so France can react in a crisis. He also wants those with dual French citizenship convicted of terror offences to be stripped of their French nationality and deported more quickly.
16:45 - More police and staff for judicial system
Hollande says there will be 5,000 new jobs created in the police force and the military police known as the gendarmes. He says there will also be 2,500 more administrative posts created in the judicial system to help manage prisons. Another 1,000 jobs will be created in French customs.
16:41 - Hollande wants to extend state of emergency
Hollande has confirmed he wants to extend the state of emergency beyond 12 days to three months. The French parliament will debate the move this week.
16:39 - Hollande says it's crucial Europe gives asylum to those in need
16:30 - Hollande calls on the French to show perseverance
16:25 - "We are not in a war of civilizations"
Hollande says: "The French do not give up, they stand up and resist whenever a child of the country has been attacked.
"By attacking innocent people they show how cowardly they are. We are not in a war between civilizations... we are at war against jihadist terrorism that threatens the whole world, not only France."
16:23 - Hollande praises emergency response teams
16:17 - Hollande : 'We are at war'
Hollande tells the Congress : We are at war against terrorism that threatens the whole world, not just France."
"France is at war. The acts committed against France are the acts of war against our country, our youth, our way of life," he added.
16:12 - Eiffel Tower reopens
In a symbolic move than France intends to return to normal as quickly as possible, the Eiffel Tower reopened on Monday at 3pm.
For the next three nights, the colours of the tricolour will be projected onto the famous monument.
15:59 - Hollande to speak to MPs and Senators
President François Hollande is set to speak to Senators and MPs at Versailles shortly after calling for a rare "Congres du Parlement".
Hundreds of parliamentarians are waiting in an auditorium at Versailles Palace where Hollande is set to make an historic speech.
He is expected to announce several security measures in the light of Friday's attacks.
15:57 - Germany arrests refugee who spoke of Paris attacks
German authorities said on Monday they have arrested an Algerian asylum seeker who reportedly told other migrants early last week that Paris would be hit by bomb attacks.
"He is said to have told other refugees the previous Sunday or last Monday that a bomb or bombs would go off in Paris four days later," a senior prosecutor, Werner Wolff, told news agency AFP.
Prosecutors are now examining if the 39-year-old Algerian arrested in an asylum seeker shelter Saturday in Arnsberg, western Germany is guilty of failing to report knowledge of a crime, and if he was indeed aware of that the attacks would take place.
15:48 - "Why on earth would we want to abandon our French friends?"
Foreigners living in France have been answering our question about whether the weekend's terror attacks have made think two about moving home.
Here's an example of one comment.
“Why would any of us give in to terrorists? It would be abandoning our French friends, and the country that has welcomed us, to its fate," says Steve Mann.
You can add your views below.
15:43 - Belgium charges two with terrorism
Belgian authorities have charged two people who were arrested after the Paris attacks with involvement in terrorism, prosecutors said on Monday.
The pair were charged "with a terrorist act and participation in the activities of a terrorist group", while five others detained at the weekend were freed without charge, the prosecutor's office said in a statement.
It did not give the names of the people who were charged.
One of those released was Mohamed Abdeslam - whose brother Brahim took part in the attacks and whose other brother Salah is being hunted by police.
The prosecutors confirmed that a major police raid in Brussels on Monday aimed at arresting Salah Abdeslam had ended without anyone being detained.
15:23 - Isis threaten US in new video
Isis, which claimed responsibility for Friday's attacks in Paris has issued a new video warning other countries taking part in bombing raids in Iraq and Syria that the same fate would befall them.
"We will strike America at its centre in Washington," a man said in the video.
It came as CIA director John Brennan warned on Monday that the attacks in Paris were likely not a "one-off event" and that he expects Isis has more operations in the pipeline.
"I would anticipate that this is not the only operation ISIL has in the pipeline," he said, using an alternate acronym for Isis, the militant group that has seized large areas of Syria and Iraq.
15:12 - Bataclan man survived thanks to prosthetic leg
More survivor's stories are emerging. The BBC's Gavin Lee has tweeted a story about a man who survived thanks to his prosthetic leg.
Grégoire Philonenko was said to have played dead but terrorists kicked him several times in the leg to see if he was alive. Naturally he did not flinch.
A survivor of the #Bataclan shootings says he survived because of his prosthetic leg.Gunman pushed his leg twice before moving on.1/3— Gavin Lee (@GavinLeeBBC) November 16, 2015
15:11 - Italian police hunt for car linked to attacks
Slightly contradictory reports are emerging in the Italian press about a police hunt apparently linked to the Paris attacks.
French far-right leader Marine Le Pen called on Monday for an "immediate halt" to the intake of migrants into France following the attacks on Paris.
Issuing a statement three weeks ahead of regional elections in France, Le Pen's National Front (FN) party noted that one of the attackers had been among migrants who arrived in Greece in October, and said: "As a precaution, Marine Le Pen calls for the immediate halt of all intake of migrants in France."
14:40 - Refugees left fearing backlash
The Paris attacks have brought the question of the refugee crisis to the forefront once again, especially after reports that some of the attackers were carrying Syrian passports and may have returned to Europe via Greece.
However refugees in Berlin told The Local they did not believe the Paris attacks would have a direct affect on them, saying the German government understood Isis was the root of both problems - but they expressed anger Syrians had been unfairly blamed for the attacks.
14:34 - Should France host Euro2016?
Spectators gathering on the pitch at Stade de France after Friday's attacks. Photo: AFP
While everyone has been talking about the security issues around the COP 21 climate change talks in Paris, the fact that France is due to host a major football tournament next year has been pushed somewhat into the background.
Euro2016 will see fans descend on France from across Europe and there are some who believe the tournament should be moved elsewhere.
Former French international Just Fontaine has said France should not host the European Championships next year after the Paris terrorist attacks.
The 82-year-old, who scored a record 13 goals in six games at the 1958 World Cup, was at the Stade de France on Friday and witnessed the panic after three suicide bombers staged an attack.
"It breaks my heart to say this, because I have been looking forward to the European Championships, but I think France should give up the idea of hosting it," Fontaine told German daily Die Welt.
"Every other country could host the championships, just not us.
"I greatly fear that there will be a repeat of black Friday."
14:32 - Le Pen wants immediate end to migrant intake
As perhaps could have been expected, Marine Le Pen, the leader of France's far right National Front has linked the terror attacks to immigration and wants France to close its borders to migrants immediately.
More to follow on that later.
14:18 - Brussels police operation comes to an end
The major police operation in the Brusse''s suburb of Molenbeek is over, the mayor has said.
The raid was aimed at finding the man wanted in connection with the Paris attacks, Salah Abdelslam. It seems he is still at large. One man was taken away by police but he has not been named and the individual is not believed to be Abdeslam.
"The operation is over and the result is negative. No one was arrested," spokesman Eric Van Der Sypt told AFP.
14:03 - 'I won't stay at home and be afraid'
The Local's Oliver Gee has been down at Place de la République talking to some of the crowds who have gathered at the makeshift shrine.
Chloé, a 19-year-old Parisian, is making paper cranes from today's newspaper at the central Place de la Republique.
"I don't know why I decided to do it, I guess I just wanted to make something beautiful out of what the terrorists did," she told The Local.
Three other women, who she doesn't know, have sat down to join her.
"We saw what she was doing and thought it was a beautiful symbol for freedom," one said.
Chloé said that passersby have asked to take the cranes to put at the foot of the statue in the centre of the square, where a makeshift vigil is overflowing with candles and flowers.
She said the attacks wouldn't stop her from living the same life.
"I'm not going to stay at home and be afraid that I might get killed if I leave," she said.
"I'm going to keep eating at restaurants, keep going to concerts. If I don't, then the terrorists will win."
13:42 - Belgian police release suspect's brother
Belgian authorities on Monday released five out of the seven suspects who were arrested at the weekend after the Paris attacks, including the brother of one of the suicide bombers, prosecutors said.
Mohamed Abdeslam – whose brother Brahim took part in the attacks and whose other brother Salah is being hunted by police – was freed "without being charged," a spokesman for the prosecutor told AFP.
13:30 - Brussels raid targeting wanted jihadist
A major raid by Belgian police under way in Brussels on Monday is aimed at finding Saleh Abdeslam, who was named by French police as a key suspect in the Paris attacks, prosecutors told AFP.
"That's correct," a spokesman for the prosecutor said when asked if the operation targeted Abdeslam, adding however that he was unable to confirm whether Abdeslam was actually in a house surrounded by police in the Molenbeek
district of the Belgian capital.
13.20 - Belgium's Molenbeek district a 'hotbed' of Islamic radicalism
Raids on Sunday and Monday in the Brussels suburb of Molenbeek have shifted focus to a section of the Brussels capital where authorities “have lost control”, according to the country’s foreign minister Jan Jambon.
The Local's Oliver Gee has just been to Le Carillon, the scene of one of Friday's attacks, where people gathered on Monday to mark a minute silence.
He has just filed this short report:
At the intersection between the bar Le Carillon and Le Petite Cambodge - where 14 were killed in Friday - hundreds disregarded the ban on public gatherings to pay tribute to the victims.
What was supposed to be a one-minute silence turned into ten.
It was a sombre and chilling mood, with the bullet holes in the windows of Le Carillon still clearly on show.
Above, in English, the words Happy Hours were printed on the wall.
"It's ironic isn't it," a woman who lived just 50 meters away told The Local. "At a time like this, I kind of like it. We need it."
After the ten minutes of silence, a round of applause broke out. A man read a poem apparently sent in from somewhere in Africa, likely because Le Carillon was run by Algerians.
After more applause, onlookers sang a gentle but powerful version of the national anthem.
People in the crowd were in tears.
12:39 - Molenbeek police operation continues
A major police operation is still taking place in the Brussel's suburb of Molenbeek. The operation has been underway for around two hours now. It is believed police are hunting Abdelslam Salah, the man who is the subject of an international arrest warrant.
Tweets and images from the scene show a huge police presence as well as scores of journalists and photographers. One man has reportedly been arrested.
12:30 - Disputed reports of suspect's arrest
There are disputed reports in Belgium that Abdeslam Salah, the man wanted in connection with attacks has been arrested in the Brussel's suburb of Molenbeek.
While RTL radion in Belgium claimed he had been arrested, public officials then denied within minutes that he was in custody.
BREAKING: Police raid still ongoing here in Rue Delaunoy. Police are in roof of adjoining building. Focus on No.47. pic.twitter.com/U2TZgO1oTA— Paul Brennan (@paulrbrennan) November 16, 2015
12:00 - France falls silent for victims
All across France a minute silence has been held to remember those who died in the attacks. In many places the silence went on for many minutes and was followed by moving renditions of the Marseillaise national anthem.
Here are some images and videos that show the moving scenes.
Powerful rendition of the national anthem at Le Carillon shooting site in Paris right now. pic.twitter.com/AIhcaWH7OV— Oliver Gee (@olivergee23) November 16, 2015
11:56 - Turkey warned France of Bataclan bomber
Turkey warned France almost a year ago about a suspected Isis militant who blew himself up in the bloody Paris attacks but the French authorities did not respond, a senior Turkish official said on Monday.
Turkish police "notified their French counterparts twice -- in December 2014 and June 2015" about Omar Ismail Mostefai, the official told AFP, asking not to be named.
"We did, however, not hear back from France on the matter," added the official.
Identified by his finger, which was found among the rubble of the Bataclan concert hall, the 29-year-old Mostefai was one of three attackers, all wearing suicide vests, at the venue where 89 people were killed in the bloodiest scene of the carnage.
11:43 - Abdelhamid Abaaoud - mastermind of jihadist network?
11:35 - More on the alleged mastermind of Paris attacks
Abdelhamid Abaaoud, otherwise known as Abou Omar, is being named in the French media, who are sourcing police, as the mastermind of the Paris attacks.
Abaaoud is Belgian but lives in Syria. He reportedly committed several armed robberies along with Abdelslam Salah, the man wanted by police in connection with the attacks on Friday.
Apparently a jihadist who returned from Syria to France told French intelligence services that he had met Abaaoud in Syria and had been asked to attack a concert hall in Paris.
There are also suggestions Abaaoud was beind the foiled attacks on a church near Paris in April and the the botched attempt to kill train passengers on the Amsterdam to Paris line in August.
11:29 - "This is just the beginning"
Interior Minister Cazeneuve says the response by "France is just the beginning".
"The riposte will be on a huge scale, it will be total. anyone who attacks the Republic, then the Republic will be merciless towards them and their accomplices.
"Terrorists will never destroy the Republic, because the Republic will destroy them:
11:25 - 'France is at war both at home and abroad'
Cazeneuve has reinforced France's resolve to tackle terrorism at home and abroad.
"We are leading a war both abroad and internally. The threat of other terrorist actions remains high, but that is not new. Six attacks have been thwarted since spring this year".
11:16 - 62 people banned from entering France since January
In an effort to demonstrate how France has already been acting to prevent terror attacks, Cazeneuve lists a series of figures:
62 people have been banned from French territory since January's Paris attacks,
80 extremist websites have been blocked by the government.
Six people have been stripped of French nationality and numerous individuals have been deported.
11:13 - Weapons of war seized
Cazeneuve says weapons of war have been seized in Monday night's raids. The minister talks of targeting drug traffickers who were funding Islamic extremism.
Computers and mobile phones were seized along with weapons in raids across 19 départements.
23 arrests were made in total, and over 30 arms seized, including four weapons of war.
Cazeneuve said 104 people have been placed under house arrest since Friday's attacks.
11:12 - 168 raids taken place over night
Cazeneuve says 168 raids have taken place overnight targeting various suspects. Not all were linked to terrorism – some were related to drug trafficking
11:00 - Interior minister speaks:
Bernard Cazeneuve says: "The investigation is continuing, but the threat remains high."
10:52 - Bataclan attacker had been to Syria
According to AFP reports the latest attacker to be identified Samy Amimour went to Syria two years ago, his family have said.
Three members of Amimour's family were taken into custody for questioning on Monday, police have said.
10:46 - New raids in Molenbeek suburb of Brussels
Reports from Belgium say that police are carrying out a raid in the Brussels suburb of Molenbeek, where the plot to attack Paris was said to have been masterminded and some of the attackers lived. There are unconfirmed reports that police have cornered a man in an apartment.
Belgium's Première Radio reports that 100 armed police officers are outside an apartment in Molenbeek and asking a man inside to come out.— James Franey (@jamesfraney) November 16, 2015
A suicide bomber identified by police on Monday who blew himself up at the Stade de France was carrying a Syrian passport in the name of Ahmad Al Mohammad, although authorities said the authenticity of the document had yet to be verified.
There was also talk of a Syrian passport being found near the body of one of the suicide bombers in the Bataclan, but again it has not been verified.
10:24 - More on the reduced COP 21 conference
A lot of questions have been raised about whether Paris should host the COP 21 climate summit at the end of the month. The event will bring together dozens of world leaders and hundreds of other government ministers and officials from around the world.
This morning PM Manuel Valls says it will go ahead, but it will simply be about negotiations.
"No head of state, of government -- on the contrary -- has asked us to postpone this meeting. All want to be there," Valls said on RTL radio.
"To do otherwise would, I believe, be to yield to terrorism."
"France will be the capital of the world," he said, adding the conference would "probably" be reduced to the negotiation.
"We are in the process of looking at that but everything which was outside of the COP (climate talks), a whole series of concerts, of rather festive events, will be without a doubt cancelled," Valls added.
10:16 - Bataclan attacker known to police
Samy Animour, aged 28, is the latest attacker to be identified and was already known to police, the prosecutor in Paris has revealed.
Animour, from the Paris suburb of Drancy, was known to anti-terrorist authorities after being charged in October 2012 for planning to leave for Yemen.
10:08 - Two more attackers identified
Police in Paris have confirmed they have identified two more attackers, bringing the total to five.
The two latest are Ahmad Al Mohammad, who blew himself up at the Stade de France and Samy Amimour, who was involved in the Bataclan attack. He also blew himself up with a suicide vest.
Two out of the seven attackers who died on Friday remain unidentified.
10:01 - Has the mastermind of the attacks been identified?
One of the suicide bombers in the Paris attacks had links to a Belgian Isis militant believed to be the mastermind of a jihadist cell dismantled in January, a report said on Monday.
The name of Paris attacker Brahim Abdeslam appears in several police files alongside leading extremist Abdelhamid Abaaoud relating to criminal cases in 2010 and 2011, Flemish-language newspaper De Standaard reported.
"Investigators see a link with Verviers," it said, referring to an eastern Belgian town where police shot dead two militants in January and broke up a cell aiming to kill Belgian police officers in the streets days after the Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris.
Belgian prosecutors were not immediately available for comment.
Abaaoud -- a 27-year-old Belgian of Moroccan descent who allegedly led the group and had fought with the Islamic State group in Syria -- remains at large.
Both Abdeslam, a Belgium-based Frenchman who blew himself up outside a bar on Boulevard Voltaire, and Abaaoud lived in the Brussels district of Molenbeek which has a reputation as a hotbed of Islamic militancy.
09:56 - Paris mayor leads by example
Parisians have been talking of the need to show defiance in the face of the terror threat. The very hands-on mayor Anne Hidalgo is leading by example.
C'est donc encore en notre nom à tous et au nom de tous les Parisiens que je dis solennellement à la face du monde : nous n'avons pas peur.— Anne Hidalgo (@Anne_Hidalgo) November 16, 2015
09:52 - Manhunt still underway for 'dangerous' attacker
Just a reminder that an international manhunt is underway to find 26-year-old Salah Abdeslam, one of three brothers linked to Friday's attacks.
French police released a photo of the suspect they were looking for in connection with the attacks, naming him as 26-year-old Salah Abdeslam and describing him as a "dangerous individual".
The Belgian authorities are holding seven people for questioning in connection with the gun and suicide attacks in the French capital, and investigators have found that two cars used in the operation were rented in Belgium, prosecutors said.
09:44 - Britain has foiled series of plots
British security services have foiled around seven terror attacks since June with fighters returning from Syria posing a growing threat, Prime Minister David Cameron said on Monday.
"Our security and intelligence services have stopped something like seven attacks in the last six months, albeit attacks planned on a smaller scale" than Friday's attacks in Paris, he told BBC Radio 4 from Turkey.
"We have been aware of these cells operating in Syria that are radicalizing people in our own countries, potentially sending people back to carry out attacks," he added.
"It was the sort of thing we were warned about."
09:26 - Francois Hollande to make rare address to MPs
The French president François Hollande will address the Congres des Parlimentaires - senators and MPs, on Monday afternoon at the Versailles.
It's only the third time a president has done this. He is expected to announce new security measures.
09:17 - Paris stocks fall as markets open
And in other sign of the impact of the shootings and explosions on France, Paris stocks fell 1.1 percent in opening trade.
AFP: Paris stocks fell 1.1 percent at the opening bell on Monday in the first trading since attacks on the French capital left 129 people dead and 352 injured. The CAC 40 exchange fell 51.03 points to 4,756.92 points
09:12 - Concerts and events linked to COP 21 to be cancelled
In a sign of the knock on effects the attacks will have on events in France, the French PM says that concerts and events linked to the COP 21 environment conference at the end of November will have to be cancelled.
"The conference will be reduced to negotiations", said Valls.
09:05 - Radical mosques must be closed, says PM Valls
Manuel Valls has also been talking of the need to close extremist mosques in the country.
"We need to close the the mosques and associations who attack the values of the French Republic and we need to expel all the foreigners who preach extremism that are against our values."
08:42 - French PM says 150 raids carried out
French PM says in 150 "administrative searches" have taken place across the country.
RT Dozens of arrests in French anti-terror raids after Paris massacre pic.twitter.com/ioB0X4Qf9k— Hamrin_English (@Hamrin_English) November 16, 2015
Here's the latest form AFP on this morning's raids.
French police carried out dozens of pre-dawn raids on suspected Islamists Monday, focussing particularly on the Lyon area where they made five arrests and seized "an arsenal" of weapons, police sources said.
Thirteen raids were carried out around the southeastern French city, leading to five arrests and the seizure of a rocket launcher, a Kalashnikov assault rifle, bulletproof vests and handguns, local police said.
08:40 - “France one of Europe’s best” security services
More info on the raids carried out across France is coming through. According to BFMTV, five people have been arrested in Lyon and numerous arms have been seized including a rocket launcher.
In all 13 raids were carried out in the Lyon region. Apart from a rocket launcher, police also seized bullet proof vests, pistols and Kalashnikovs, sources have told French media.
There's no indication yet that these arms were to be used in planned attacks, it may just be a case of French police trying to get weapons off the streets in a preventative measure.
08:24 - French PM warns of more attacks
PM Manuel Valls told the French public on Monday that more attacks on the country were being planned and that the series of shootings and explosions that killed 129 on Friday had been "organised and planned in Syria".
"Terrorism could hit France in the coming days or in the coming weeks," said Valls. "We will have to live with this terrorist threat for a long time and without doubt we have to be prepared for new attacks.
On the subject of Friday's attacks Valls said: "This was organised, thought of and planned in Syria."
The team who carried out the attacks was "the fruit of planning in Syria, but based in Belgium".
08:18 - Bobigny raid directly linked to attacks
While most of the raids being carried out across the country are believed to be linked tothe state of emergency, which gives the police extra powers to search homes, the raid in Bobigny, a suburb to the north of Paris is believed to be directly linked to the attacks on Friday night.
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