Nadiyah Suleiman, Page Editor
Johnna Headley, Reporter
PARIS - The world watched horror-stricken as Paris, France was openly attacked with suicide bombing and mass shootings claiming around 129 lives. Over 350 people were wounded and 99 are in critical condition.
According to CNN, there were six locations targeted in the attacks. The first attack, a suicide bomber, took place at the Stade de France soccer stadium, closely followed by shootings at two restaurants, Le Petit Cambrodge and Le Carillon bar. Three other attacks happened at a restaurant, a bar, and again at the same stadium. The severest attack took place at the Bataclan Theater at the center of the city where a rock concert was being held. Gunmen openly fired on the large crowd and held nearly 100 hostages for almost two hours. The showdown between the suspects and police ultimately ended with the suspects detonating their suicide bomb belts.
Two TWU students and a faculty member were traveling in Paris for a study abroad trip at the time. They are safe and the university remains in contact with them. A former UNT exchange student, Francois Xavier Prevost, fell victim to the attacks and was named among those killed. Prevost attended UNT in 2007 and was attending the rock concert at the Bataclan Theater to see the American band Eagles of the Death Metal.
The Washington Post reported that six suspects blew themselves up while the police killed a seventh suspect. However, a statement made by the Islamic State claimed there were eight men involved with the attacks. Authorities are still searching for the last suspect. During Friday’s attacks French President Francois Hollande gave a speech stating: “In these difficult moments, we must – and I’m thinking of the many victims, their families and the injured – show compassion and solidarity. But we must also show unity and calm.”
Salah Abdeslam is also a suspect in the Paris attacks. Reports say two rooms at a hotel in Paris suburb Alfortville, were rented out under Abdeslam’s credit card. Allegedly, at least two of the attackers were reported to arrive at that hotel two days before the attacks took place. Abdeslam is still the subject of a European-wide manhunt.
According to The New York Times, Paris is under heavily police surveillance and the checks at France’s borders are now back into effect. Air travel has not been shut down, but there have been several security-related delays. Public protests have been strictly prohibited until Thursday, and many events have been cancelled. Schools, theaters, department stores, Disneyland Paris and the Eiffel Tower as of this writing have been closed.
According to CNN, on Nov. 15 France began their retaliation by carrying out bomb missions to ISIS areas in Raqqa, Syria including a command and recruitment center, an ammunition storage base and a training camp. The number of ISIS casualties cannot be confirmed, however no civilian casualties have been reported.