Paris Attacks: The Facts

By Nathalie Mairena

At least eight terrorists attacked six different locations in the center of Paris Friday. Out of the eight attackers, seven died in apparent suicide bombings.

The attacks began almost simultaneously at 9:20 pm, with attackers detonating explosives and shooting into local restaurants and cafes. They were seen with AK-47 automatic weapons and many of the explosions were suicide bombings.

President Francois Hollande was evacuated from the Stade de France stadium where one explosion took place near the entrance and was taken to the Interior Ministry where a crisis meeting took place.

In the nearby Bataclan theater, where an American Heavy Metal band was playing, attackers went in and took everyone hostage. According to a reporter who managed to escape the concert hall, the attackers shot into the crowd for at least 10 minutes.

SWAT teams stormed the theater  at around 12:30am to find at least 90 people dead. Two of the attackers activated their bomb vests while the third was shot dead.

In total, at least 129 people were killed and more than 350 were wounded. The attack is unlike any the city has experienced since World War Two.

President Hollande declared a state of emergency on the entire country and closed their borders. Several nearby countries, including the United Kingdom, have been on high alert.

“In these difficult moments, we must — and I’m thinking of the many victims, their families and the injured — show compassion and solidarity,” said Hollande in a speech he delivered as the attack unfolded. “But we must also show unity and calm.”

Over 200 soldiers were deployed into the streets of Paris and President Hollande asked all citizens of France to stay in their homes. Paris was put under its first curfew since World War Two.

During the attacks, several citizens opened up their homes to people on the streets, with many using the hashtag #PorteOuverte to get in contact with anyone who needed shelter.

Taxi drivers and buses evacuated people. A large number of Parisians came forward on Saturday to donate blood to the victims of the attack; with such an overwhelming number coming forward, blood banks had to turn some donors away.

Countries such as Brazil, Australia, the United States and many more have joined in solidarity, with New York, the Sydney Opera House, the Rio de Janeiro Jesus statue and others colored in the French flag.

Saturday morning, ISIS released a video claiming responsibility for the attack. Hollande vowed France would not stand idle and would fight a “merciless” war against ISIS.

RELATED: Terrorists are to Blame for the Attacks on Paris, not Muslims

President Obama has come forward in supporting France, speaking during the attack.

“This is an attack on all of humanity,” said Obama. “We stand together with [France].”



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