This Sunday, Paris commemorated a year since the attacks that shook the nation. During the attacks a year ago 130 people lost their lives. Friends and family are still remembering the tragic day. The city was united in a show of solidarity as the memory of the events overshadowed this weekend. People lit lanterns and candles in the evening to commemorate the Paris attacks. The city fell victim to international terrorism and joined an increasingly longer list of cities that were affected by terror groups. The memory of the day of 13 November 2015 will stay on with Parisians for a long time to come.
French Officials Unveil Plaques in Paris
Authorities in France organized commemorative events on Sunday. French President Francois Hollande was present to unveil plaques at sites in Paris where the terror attacks took place. The sites were at the Stade de France, in the Boulevard Voltaire, outside the Petit Cambodge restaurant, at the Belle Equipe and Bonne Biere cafes.
The site where there was the highest number of casualties was concert venue Bataclan. There, French President Francois Hollande took down a French flag that revealed a memorial. As part of the ceremony, the names of the 90 victims of the terrorist attack were read out loud.
During the previous evening, a fundraiser for charities that give support to victims of the attacks took place at the concert venue. Bataclan has recently been opened again after a major renovation. Performing at the event was Sting, who gave an emotional performance. He opened the concert by saying: “We shall not forget them.”
France Comes to Terms with Terror Attacks
On the morning of Sunday, Parisians came to Place de la République to bring flowers and light candles. After the attacks last year, the Place de la République became a place where residents of Paris gathered to mourn and to express a sense of unity. Many feel that with a year passing, it is time to move forward.
The year since the Paris attacks was one that had too much shock and grief. Relatives of the victims, survivors of the attacks and the country as a whole has felt the impact of the events. France went through a traumatic time reminiscent of the 9/11 attack in the United States.
France was first shaken by the terrorist attack on the offices of the Charlie Hebdo satirical newspaper in January 2015. At the time, authorities made the decision to increase police presence on the streets. Armed police officers received the task to patrol public spaces like tourist hot spots, the vicinity of schools as well as governments and religious buildings.
But the enhanced security measures were not enough to prevent the Paris attacks. Terrorists targeted France again in November 2015. Even after that, in 2016, there have been attacks in Nice, Rouen and Magnanville. The violence has left the country in shock, trying to make sense of what is going on.
The vigil that Paris held on the night of November 13 united the city for a brief moment.
Image source: here.