Over 100 Reported Dead in Terror Attacks at Paris Theater—Art World Grieves
The Louvre and the Pompidou may also have been attacked.
Multiple attacks at several sites in Paris, including a deadly siege and hostage situation at the Bataclan theater, have left over 100 dead, according to the New York Times.
“As I speak, terrorist attacks of unprecedented proportions are underway in the Paris area. There are dozens killed, there are many injured. It is a horror,” said French President François Hollande addressing the nation on Friday night, as reported by the Independent.
He declared a state of emergency, and closed the country’s borders. Hollande said these are “terrorist attacks of unprecedented proportions.”
The Times reports that French news services say around 100 people died during a two-hour siege at the theater. Others have been killed in at least five other attacks across the city in an apparently coordinated assault.
The Guardian is reporting a death toll above 150, and that all of the attackers at the Bataclan committed suicide by explosion.
Conflicting reports suggest the Louvre and the Centre Pompidou are among the other sites that have been hit, as well as the Les Halles shopping center and the Stade de France arena, where a football game was taking place.
An Eiffel Tower peace symbol designed by London-based French graphic designer Jean Jullien is already trending on social media with the hashtag #PeaceforParis, similar to the popular #JeSuisCharlie hashtag shared around social media sites in January. Numerous other artists are responding to the tragedy.
Given ISIS’s current reign of terror in the Middle East, and the role of Islamic extremists in the Charlie Hebdo shootings, speculation of ISIS’s involvement is to be expected. “We know where it comes from, who these criminals are, who these terrorists are,” said Hollande, without naming any radical groups.
The Mirror reports that a witness at the Bataclan heard a gunman shout “Allahu Akbar” (Arabic for “God is great”) as well as “This is for Syria.”
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