Over 700,000 Rally Across France After Attacks

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france rally

More than 700,000 people have taken part in rallies across France after three days of terror that claimed 17 innocent lives, says French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve.

 Around 80,000 gathered in Toulouse, 40,000 in Pau, 30,000 in Nantes, 23,000 in Nice, 22,000 in Orleans and 20,000 in Besancon to demonstrate against the Paris attacks, said officials.

It comes ahead of a march of unity in the capital on Sunday which is expected to draw huge crowds and will be attended by world leaders, including Prime Minister David Cameron and Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu.

Mr Cazeneuve has said the government will take “all measures” to ensure the march is safe.

The country’s defence ministry said it is sending another 500 soldiers into the greater Paris area, meaning there are now some 1,350 troops there, guarding places of worship and tourist sites.

Some 2,000 police officers will also be deployed for the rally, including marksmen on roofs.

In a sombre speech after the sieges had been brought to an end, French President Francois Hollande said: “I call on all the French people to rise up this Sunday, together, to defend the values of democracy, freedom and pluralism to which we are attached.”

Brothers Said and Cherif Kouachi attacked the offices of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo on Wednesday, shooting dead 12 people in France’s deadliest terror attack in decades.

The pair then went on the run, and were eventually killed after a two-day manhunt.

Amedy Coulibaly, a jihadist gunman who said he had worked with the brothers, was also killed by police after killing four hostages at a kosher grocery shop in an eastern suburb of Paris.

A day earlier he shot and killed a policewoman in Montrouge, just south of Paris.

Hayat Boumeddiene, 26, who was identified along with Coulibaly as a suspect in the killing of a police officer on Thursday, remains on the run.

She is believed to have fled the country bound for Syria before the sieges reached a bloody conclusion.

Meanwhile, Mr Netanyahu told French Jews that Israel was their home and ordered a ministerial committee to discuss ways of encouraging immigration of French and other European Jews to Israel.

He said: “To all the Jews of France, all the Jews of Europe, I would like to say that Israel is not just the place in whose direction you pray, the state of Israel is your home.

“Unless the world comes to its senses, terror will continue to strike in other places.”

 

Source: Sky News

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