At least 80 dead after truck slams into crowd in Nice, France

A truck plowed through a crowd of Bastille Day revelers at Nice’s Palais de la Mediterranee

In this video grab taken Thursday July 14, 2016, ambulances and Police cars are seen after a truck drove on to the sidewalk and plowed through a crowd of revelers. (BFMTV via AP)

In this video grab taken Thursday July 14, 2016, ambulances and Police cars are seen after a truck drove on to the sidewalk and plowed through a crowd of revelers. (BFMTV via AP)

NICE, France — A truck loaded with weapons and hand grenades drove onto a sidewalk for more than a mile, plowing through Bastille Day revelers who’d gathered to watch fireworks in the French resort city of Nice late Thursday in what some officials and eyewitnesses called a deliberate attack that killed at least 80.

French President Francois Hollande says “the terrorist character” of the attack in Nice cannot be denied.

Hollande confirmed that 77 people, including some children, were killed when the truck drove through the crowds who had just watched a fireworks display on seafront in the city. The interior minister later updated that total to 80, adding that 18 wounded people were in critical condition.

Just hours after announcing in the traditional Bastille Day interview that the state of emergency, in place since November attacks that killed 130 in Paris, was to be removed, Hollande said it must be extended for three months. That decision will need parliamentary approval.

He also said other measures will be put in place to counter the threat.

Christian Estrosi, the president of the Provence Alpes Cote d’Azur regional council (which includes Nice) said the truck was loaded with arms and grenades. He told BFM TV that “the driver fired on the crowd, according to the police who killed him.” He added that flags would be lowered across the city on Friday, and that the city’s jazz festival, due to open on Saturday, and a Rihanna concert planned for Friday evening, have both been cancelled.

Nice prosecutor Jean-Michel Pretre described a horrific scene, with bodies strewn about along the roadway. However, he stopped short of using the word attack, while acknowledging that “it has many ingredients of an attack that allow us to think that.”

The ranking politician of the Alpes-Maritime department that includes Nice said the truck plowed into the crowd over a distance of 2 kilometres. Many of those on the ground were in shorts and other summer clothing.

Eric Ciotti said on BFM TV that police killed the driver “apparently after an exchange of gunfire.”

Sylvie Toffin, a press officer with the local prefecture, said the truck ran over people on a “long trip” down the sidewalk near Nice’s Palais de la Méditerranée, a building that fronts the beach. She called the incident “an attack.”

Wassim Bouhlel, a Nice native who spoke to the AP nearby, said that he saw a truck drive into the crowd. “There was carnage on the road,” he said. “Bodies everywhere.”

Bouhlel said he witnessed the man emerge with a gun and start shooting

Images being broadcast across French media showed revelers running for their lives down Nice’s palm tree-lined Promenade des Anglais, the famous seaside boulevard named for the English aristocrats who proposed its construction in the 19th century.

Video footage showed men and women — one or two pushing strollers — racing to get away from the scenes. And, in what appeared to be evidence of a gun battle, photos showed a truck with at least half a dozen bullet holes punched through its windshield.

It was not immediately clear who would have been behind an attack. Meanwhile, Paris prosecutor’s office has opened a terrorism investigation over the attack.

Police officers and a soldier stand by the sealed off area of an attack after a truck drove on to the sidewalk and plowed through a crowd of revelers who'd gathered to watch the fireworks in the French resort city of Nice, southern France, Friday, July 15, 2016. A spokesman for France's Interior Ministry says there are likely to be "several dozen dead" after a truck drove into a crowd of revelers celebrating Bastille Day in the French city of Nice. (AP Photo/Ciaran Fahey)

Police officers and a soldier stand by the sealed off area of an attack after a truck drove on to the sidewalk and plowed through a crowd of revelers who’d gathered to watch the fireworks in the French resort city of Nice, southern France, Friday, July 15, 2016. A spokesman for France’s Interior Ministry says there are likely to be “several dozen dead” after a truck drove into a crowd of revelers celebrating Bastille Day in the French city of Nice. (AP Photo/Ciaran Fahey)

Writing online, Nice Matin journalist Damien Allemand who was at the waterside said the fireworks display had finished and the crowd had got up to leave when they heard a noise and cries.

“A fraction of a second later, an enormous white truck came along at a crazy speed, turning the wheel to mow down the maximum number of people,” he said.

“I saw bodies flying like bowling pins along its route. Heard noises, cries that I will never forget.”

Graphic footage showed a scene of horror up and down the Promenade, with broken bodies splayed out on the asphalt, some of them piled near one another, others bleeding out onto the roadway or twisted into unnatural shapes.

“Help my mother, please!” one person yells out amid a cacophony of screaming and crying. A pink girl’s bicycle is briefly seen overturned by the side of the road.

The origin and authenticity of the footage could not immediately be verified.

Kayla Repan, of Boca Raton, Florida, was among the hundreds gathered on the promenade to watch fireworks.

“The whole city was running. I got extremely frightened and ran away from the promenade,” she said. “It was chaos. We hid in a restaurant but now we moved to a separate hotel.”

Canadian residents were among those starting to mark the safe on Facebook’s “Safety Check.”

Alex Mitchell, who lives in Kingston, Ont., wrote in an email that he and his family are staying in an apartment a few blocks from the scene.

He said they were already back from watching the fireworks when the news broke.

“What Val and I keep thinking about is all the families and children we saw tonight—and there were so many,” he said, referring to his wife. “To think that such a wonderful event could be turned into something so horrible makes us both sick. We’re just not sure what to tell our kids.”

Aman Cheema simply tweeted the hashtag “Canada” and “Hey guys me and my wife are safe, we were just two blocks away from the attack.”

World leaders have spoken out condemning the events in Nice.

President Barack Obama is condemning what he says “appears to be a horrific terrorist attack.”

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and other loved ones of those killed,” he said.

Noting that the attack occurred on Bastille Day, Obama praised “the extraordinary resilience and democratic values that have made France an inspiration to the entire world.”

Obama is offering French officials “any assistance that they may need to investigate this attack and bring those responsible to justice.”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has tweeted that Canadians are shocked by the attack.

He says Canada’s sympathy is with the victims, and he expressed Canadians’ solidarity with the French people.

The two presumptive nominees in the U.S. election also spoke about the attacks.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said that if he’s elected president he would ask Congress for a declaration of war on the Islamic State.

In an interview with Fox News Channel’s “The O’Reilly Factor,” Trump said, “This is war.” He spoke after a truck carrying weapons and hand grenades drove onto a sidewalk in Nice, France, and plowed through people celebrating Bastille Day, killing at least 77 people.

Trump says to fight the Islamic State, which he calls a “cancer,” NATO should be used “for a purpose.”

In a separate interview on Fox, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton says the U.S. needs to “stand strongly” with France and strengthen our alliances, including with NATO, to ferret out terrorism and prevent future attacks. Clinton says she would intensify efforts to put together a more effective coalition against terrorism.


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At least 80 dead after truck slams into crowd in Nice, France

  1. “It was not immediately clear who would have been behind an attack.” Oh, I think we have a pretty good idea. The religion of peace has struck again. And I’m equally certain that the left will predictably be falling over themselves to remind us that the perpetrators of this attack weren’t “real Muslims”. I just want to know, when will you guys wake up? What will it take for you guys to finally accept the reality of the situation?

    • Nothing special about it John.

      Same as IRA, Baader-Meinhhoff, FLQ, Weather Underground and all the other tiny groups that wander around aimlessly accomplishing nothing at all.

      • I don’t understand what you’re trying to say, maybe you could clarify what it is that you mean. I definitely wouldn’t say that Islamic terrorists aren’t accomplishing anything at all, they’ve actually accomplished quite a bit. 9 deadly Muslim terror attacks in France in the last 18 months.

        • There are always small groups of political psychopaths…..they don’t accomplish anything….they just kill small amounts of people.

          The cause varies with the times.

          Lots of groups have been considered ‘terrorists’ over the years.

          • Actually, the Islamic cause hasn’t really varied at all; it’s been consistent for about 1400 years. Wage jihad against the kafirs, conquer their territory, and kill, enslave, convert or force them to pay jizya. It started with Muhammed, that pedophile warlord who Muslims revere as the perfect human and strive to emulate, and it continues to this very day. Of course, terror attacks aren’t the only way of waging jihad.

            And “small groups”? Lol, am I being trolled here? Yea small groups applies to ham-and-eggers like the FLQ or the Weather Underground like you mentioned before. But radical Islam represents a much more serious threat, to the entire world. There’s a lot of research you could do on this if you were so inclined, but for a start you could just google “Islamic terrorism” or “list of Islamic terror attacks”, something along those lines.

          • Two words- Gavrilo Princip.

        • Actually none of that is true.

          It’s just a religion like all the rest of them

          Islam had a Golden Age (when they invented algebra and coffee and various medicines, and named the stars) and then it devolved into wars…..same as christianity.

          Don’t read crackpot right-wing sites.

          Getting people all worked up for war is an old, old game.

          • You’re wrong. I can guarantee you’ve never studied the scripture or the history of Islam at all. You know nothing of the Quran, the Hadiths or the Sunnah. You talk about sites but you’re simply regurgitating talking points that you saw on some left wing site, or heard on the Daily Show or something. If pressed you couldn’t go into detail about the supposed Islamic Golden Age, you wouldn’t be able to give any details on how you know that algebra or coffee were invented by a Muslim – neither were btw and since when does a religion get credit for something a scientist came up with anyway? You only really hear that for Muslims and their so-called Golden Age – you just heard it from someone or read it in some lightweight article. Devolved into wars? Early Islam was spread by the sword, Muhammed himself was a desert bandit-cum-warlord who took sex slaves and executed prisoners. The Islamic world has constantly been at war since, with themselves and with everyone around them.

            You clearly don’t know what you’re talking about, you haven’t studied any of it at all but you still dismiss everything I said by saying “actually none of that is true”, without refuting anything I said. You’ve been conditioned to be like this. My main advice to you, and to anyone living here in the West is to learn about Islam as a religion and a political movement, it always has and always will be both. Educate yourselves, all of you. Jihad is real and it’s being waged on us on many fronts.

        • Look, what are you Cons playing at?

          This isn’t a game you know

          I don’t have time for children talking nonsense, or teenage chest-thumping…….the history of Islam is well-known and verified.

          Use an encyclopedia…..not some white supremacist crackpot site….and save us from the rubbish.

          My advice to you is ‘grow up’

          • lol

          • I thought so…..you are all mouth and no brains.JohnD

  2. Apparently he drank, ate pork, and never went to a mosque……so probably another ‘lone wolf’.

  3. Of course, we’re supposed to think that Donald Trump is the problem for wanting to close the immigration door so that Islamists can’t grow their ranks any more than they already have in the U.S. I take it that our politically correct professor friends are already planning this September’s lectures to warn students about the dangers of “white males”. At this point, it’s safe to say that all those who try to suppress the immigration debate and/or insist on continued open immigration are Islamist moles and they should be treated as such.

    • Islamic moles?? LOL

      There are well over a million Muslims in Canada. Are they all moles?

      And what do we do about them? Put them on buses and ship them to ‘camps’?

      Maybe we could bus them to Mexico…..and then the US could build a 2000 mile fence? Waddya think?

    • It’s safe to say that anybody who quotes Donald Trump, who is easily the dumbest creature ever to run for public office in a western nation, has nothing useful to say about immigration, Islam, moles, beauty queens, reality shows or the size of his hands in relation to his other equipment.

      Donald Trump isn’t the problem. The people who think he makes any sense at all, on any subject, are the problem. Ipso fatso, you are the problem son.

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