mercredi 7 janvier 2015

France in shock as gunmen storm 11th arrondissement in Paris

© Screen grab
Gunmen attacked French satirical magazine, Charlie Hebdo this wednesday morning leaving 12 people dead and 7 injured.

Three hooded gunmen, armed with Kalashnikovs and a rocket launcher, arrived at 10:40am at the headquarters of the weekly magazine in the 11th arrondissement in Paris. According witnesses, they first stalked the building for a few minutes, and reportedly said to a man in the street: "Tell the media this is from al-Qaeda in Yemen". They got access into building by threatening a Charlie Hebdo female cartoonist who had gone tothe nursery to get the her daughter to press in the code.

The magazine was holding its weekly editorial meetings, and had all its journalists and cartoonists present. They asked for their names before opening fire on them. Charb, who had a price put on his head by al-Qaeda in 2013, was shot dead, along with cartoonists Jean Cabut (aka Cabu) and Georges Wolinski, who were shot at during 5 minutes, and also Tignous.
Cabu, Wolinski, Tignous,  and Charb
They killed a total of 12 people, 10 journalists and two police guards. Witnesses say they shouted : “We have killed Charlie Hebdo! We have avenged the Prophet Mohammed!”

The three gunmen fled in a a black Citroen DS driven by a fourth. They drove to Porte de Pantin in north-east Paris, where they abandoned their vehicle and hijacked another one, keeping the driver as an hostage, knocked-over a pedestrian and wounded several others. The criminals are still on the run.

A police car’s windscreen with 15 bullet holes.
A video filmed by one of the magazine's journalists shows the gunmen shouting "Allahu akbar", (God is Great in Arab). Another video showed one of the gunmen shoot a police officer who was injured and lying on the road outside in the head. When policeman saw two of the gunmen jogging towards him, he held up his right hand and said "Ah, c'est bon chef" but he received a bullet in the head at close range.
© Screen grab
Charlie Hebdo offices were guarded and protection was increased in recent weeks because of fresh threats against the magazine, but the attackers had entered the building intending to kill. In 2008, Charlie Hebdo was criticised for running Danish cartoons caricaturing the Prophet Mohammed.

The magazine defended the publication in the name of freedom of expression. In 2011, their offices were firebombed after another spoof issue featuring a caricature of the prophet Mohammed on its cover.

The hashtags #CharlieHebdo and #JeSuisCharlie have been trending on Twitter, as the French speak against what is now termed as France's worst terrorist attack for 50 years.
Our heartfelt condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of the deceased.

Aucun commentaire:

Enregistrer un commentaire