Monday, November 16, 2015

Paris Attacks Update

French authorities today identified two men they believe were responsible for planning and launching the terrorist attacks in Paris that left 129 people dead. Officials believe Salim Benghalem, a French national who joined ISIL several years ago, directed Abdelhamid Abaaoud, an ISIL activist and a Belgian national, to orchestrate Friday’s rampage. (NPR, 16 November)

Three teams of assailants, using automatic weapons and explosive suicide vests, targeted six sites across Paris, including the national stadium, a crowded concert hall and several restaurants. The Islamic State has taken responsibility for the terrorist attacks. And French President Francois Hollande said in a speech before both houses of Parliament that France was at war with ISIL.

Meanwhile, Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Paris this afternoon in a show of solidarity with the French. Kerry is scheduled to meet with French officials.

Top photo: The Eiffel Tower illuminated in blue, white and red (Twitter)
Bottom photo: People gather in front of Paris City Hall, and throughout France, to hold a minute of silence; Monday 16 November 2015 (Christophe Petit Tesson/EPA/LANDOV/NPR) 

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