On a night when thousands of Paris residents and tourists were reveling and fans were enjoying a soccer match between France and world champion Germany, horror struck in an unprecedented manner. Terrorists – some with AK-47s, some reportedly with bombs strapped to them – attacked sites throughout the French capital and at the stadium where the soccer match was underway.
Scores were killed in the coordinated attacks late Friday, leaving a nation in mourning and the world in shock.
A journalist who was at a concert at the Bataclan concert venue and escaped after the shooting started told CNN: “We lied down on the floor not to get hurt. It was a huge panic. The terrorists shot at us for 10 to 15 minutes. It was a bloodbath.” Julien Pearce didn’t hear the attackers speak, but he said one friend who escaped heard them talk about Iraq and Syria. Later, he said the men were speaking French.
CNN affiliate BFMTV, citing French officials, said gunmen were still at large.
Counterterrorism officials around the United States have convened secure conference calls to try to gather information and to assess whether there is any indication of threats in the U.S, according to two U.S. counterterrorism officials. Immediate suspicion for the events in Paris falls to so-called returnees — people who have traveled to Syria and Iraq and have returned, the officials said. (Courtesy CNN)