Update: At least 84 killed by truck attack in Nice
A truck ploughed two kilometres through hundreds of people who were watching the fireworks for France's national day in Nice. The attack was of “an undeniable terrorist nature”, Hollande said. Christians call to pray.
Agencies · NICE · 15 JULY 2016 · 12:20 CET
A spokesperson for the Interior Ministry confirmed that the truck ploughed two kilometres through the crowd at around 11:00pm Thursday, as hundreds of people were on Nice's beachfront Promenade des Anglais to watch the fireworks for France's national day.
According to witness testimonies confirmed by a police source, the driver pulled out a gun and fired at the crowd before being shot dead.
He is yet to be named, but the identity papers of a 31-year-old French-Tunisian were found in the truck, according to the police.
"Investigations are currently underway to establish if the individual acted alone or if he had accomplices who might have fled", interior ministry spokesman Brandet said.
“AN UNDENIABLE TERRORIST NATURE”
President Francois Hollande said the attack was of "an undeniable terrorist nature", and convened an emergency meeting at the Interior Ministry in Paris to discuss the situation. He confirmed he would travel to Nice later on Friday.
Hollande announced that the state of emergency, in place since November's Paris attacks, will be extended by three months. It had been scheduled to expire on July 26.
Prime Minister Manuel Valls has declared three days of national mourning for the victims from Saturday.
French Christians expressed their condolences: “Our sympathy and prayers to the families of the victims and the injured in the tragedy of July 14 in Nice”, The National Council of Evangelical Christians in France (CNEF), said.
In a statement (read it in English, and French) the day after, they pointed to Jesus Christ as “the only one who is capable of transforming human hearts and to offer real peace”, and called all Fench evangelical churches to organise a time of prayer during worship services of this Sunday.
The Protestant Federation of France (FPF) offered its support and prayers, and emphasised the “need to talk, and particularly to children and adolescents” to help them cope with these tragedies.
All the European governments haave also expressed their condolences. US President Barack Obama condemned "in the strongest terms" what he said appeared to be "a horrific terrorist attack in Nice".