Calling the apparent terrorist attacks in Paris “a heartbreaking situation,” President Obama pledged the U.S.’s support to France Friday evening.
France’s motto of “Liberté, égalité, fraternité,” Obama said, “are not only values of the French people, but values that we share,” he added.
Paris was hit with a series of sudden and deadly attacks, which U.S. officials reported appeared to be coordinated. Gunmen also took more than 100 people hostage in the Batclan Concert Hall before police stormed the building. At least 87 people died before the crisis ended.
Obama offered few specifics, noting that “the situation is still unfolding.” And while he said he’d spoken with French President François Hollande earlier in the day about the upcoming G20 summit in Antalya, Turkey, he said that “I have chosen not to call President Hollande at this time because my expectation is that he’s very busy at this moment.”
“Those of us in the United States know what it’s like. We’ve gone through these types of episodes ourselves and whenever these types of things happen, we can always count on the French people to stand with us,” Obama said. “We intend to bear with them in the same fashion.”
Update 4:58pm CT, Nov. 17: The total number of people killed at the Bataclan concert hall is at least 87. In total, at least 129 people have died from the attacks.
llustration by Max Fleishman