Paris attacks: ‘Le Petit Cambodge’ to reopen

The Paris restaurant Le Petit Cambodge, where 15 people were gunned down in the Paris terror attacks has announced that it plans to reopen because not doing so "would be to admit defeat".

Paris attacks: 'Le Petit Cambodge' to reopen
Le Petit Cambodge. Photo: AFP
Terrorists killed 15 people on November 13th out the front of Le Petit Cambodge restaurant, which is directly opposite Le Carillon bar.
Both establishments have been closed to the public since, as makeshift vigils have seen flowers, candles, photos and messages pile up out the front.
On Monday, Le Petit Cambodge took to Facebook to announce that it will reopen again, and thanked the public for the “enormously touching” support. 
“It will take time for our team to get over the psychological shock, but we are all okay – which is nothing short of a miracle considering how many people weren't so fortunate,” the post read.
“Our thoughts are with the victims and their families.
“The Petit Cambodge will reopen, because life has to go on for each of us, but equally out of respect for the clients who on that night were at the restaurant. If we didn't reopen, it would be to give in and to admit defeat which is never going to happen.”
While the owners didn't mention exactly when the restaurant would reopen, they ended the note with “See you very soon – the whole team at Le Petit Cambodge”.
Meanwhile, the other bars, restaurants, and even the Bataclan concert hall show no signs of reopening. However, the support has been impressive.
Momo, one of the members of the Algerian family who runs the nearby Le Carillon, told The Local the bar will likely remain closed until December 10th.
“It will be extremely difficult, but so many people have told me they will be there as soon as we reopen,” he said.
The band that was onstage at the Bataclan – the Eagles of Death Metal – has offered to reopen the concert hall
“I don't want to spend my life trying to appease assholes I want to spend my life smiling with my friends and entertaining them,” Jesse Hughes, the band's vocalist, told Vice in an interview.
“I cannot wait to come back to Paris… I want to be the first band to play in the Bataclan when it opens back up.”


US vice president lays wreaths at site of 2015 Paris terror attacks

US Vice President Kamala Harris and French Prime Minister Jean Castex laid wreaths at a Paris cafe and France's national football stadium Saturday six years since deadly terror attacks that left 130 people dead.

US vice president lays wreaths at site of 2015 Paris terror attacks
US Vice President Kamala Harris and her husband Doug Emhoff lay flowers after ceremonies at Le Carillon bar and Le Petit Cambodge restaurant, at which 130 people were killed during the 2015 Paris terror attacks. Photo: Sarahbeth Maney/POOL/AFP

The attacks by three separate teams of Islamic State group jihadists on the night of November 13, 2015 were the worst in France since World War II.

Gunmen mowed down 129 people in front of cafes and at a concert hall in the capital, while a bus driver was killed after suicide bombers blew themselves up at the gates of the stadium in its suburbs.

Harris, wrapping up a four-day trip to France, placed a bouquet of white flowers in front of a plaque honouring the victims outside a Paris cafe.

Castex attended a minute of silence at the Stade de France football stadium, along with Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo, before laying wreaths at the sites of the other attacks inside Paris.

In front of the Bataclan concert hall, survivors and relatives of the victims listened to someone read out the names of each of the 90 people killed during a concert there six years ago.

Public commemorations of the tragedy were called off last year because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Last year we weren’t allowed to come and we all found it really tough,” said Bruno Poncet, who made it out alive of the Bataclan.

But he said the start of a trial over the attacks in September meant that those attending the commemoration this year felt more united.

‘Overcome it all’

“We’ve really bonded thanks to the trial,” he said. “During previous commemorations, we’d spot each other from afar without really daring to speak to each other. We were really shy. But standing up in court has really changed everything.”

The marathon trial, the biggest in France’s modern legal history, is expected to last until May 2022.

Twenty defendants are facing sentences of up to life in prison, including the sole attacker who was not gunned down by police, Salah Abdeslam, a French-Moroccan national who was captured in Brussels. Six of the defendants are being tried in absentia.

Poncet said he felt it was crucial that he attend the hearings. “I can’t possibly not. It’s our lives that are being discussed in that room, and it’s important to come to support the others and to try to overcome it all.”

Survivors have taken to the witness stand to recount the horror of the attacks, but also to describe life afterwards.

Several said they had been struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder, grappling with survivor’s guilt, or even feeling alienated from the rest of society.

Saturday’s commemorations are to wrap up with a minute of silence at the Stade de France in the evening before the kick-off for a game between France and Kazakhstan.

It was during a football match between France and Germany that three suicide bombers blew themselves up in 2015.

Then-French president Francois Hollande was one of the 80,000 people in the crowd, before he was discreetly whisked away to avoid triggering mass panic.