The Muslim Judicial Council (MJC) has added its voice in condemning the spate of attacks in Paris last night. A state of emergency has been declared after attacks on restaurants, a concert hall and a sports stadium in Paris killed at least 120 people, sowing widespread fear. Four gunmen killed up to 80 young people attending a rock concert at the Bataclan music hall yesterday evening. Heavily armed policemen eventually launched an assault on the building. The gunmen detonated explosive belts and dozens of shocked survivors were rescued. The attackers were killed at the site and a manhunt is under way as a number of armed men are believed to be at large.
“It is with shock and sadness that we witness the horrific shootings and suicide bombings which resulted in the death of 118 patrons and the wounding of several at the Bataclan Concert Hall in Paris,” said MJC president Maulana Ighsaan Hendricks.
“The Muslim Judicial Council conveys it’s heartfelt sympathy and condolences to the French people, the President Francois Hollande and to all those who lost their loved ones during violent attacks which took place in the French capital on Friday, 13 November.”
Hendricks said terrorist violence cannot be condoned.
“We condemn these senseless, violent and callous acts of aggression against innocent civilians. Unscrupulous barbaric acts of vengeance has no place in society. All efforts towards bringing lasting peace and good relations should be persued in order to ensure that revenge and tit for tat attacks do not become the order of the day,” he continued.
“We hope and pray that the perpetrators will be held fully accountable for this heinous crime and that they will realise that violence does not lead to peace. Peace cannot be achieved through unjust, violent, indiscriminate killings but rather through justice, fairness, respect, tolerance and good relations.”
About 40 more people were killed in five other attacks in the Paris region, officials said, including an apparent double suicide bombing outside the national stadium Stade de France. President Francois Hollande and the German foreign minister were watching a friendly football match between France and Germany there when the attacks occurred. Some 200 people were injured.
The coordinated assault came as France, a member of the US-led coalition waging air strikes against Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) fighters in Syria and Iraq, was on high alert for attacks. There has been no claim of responsibility as of yet.
Paris Public Prosecutor Francois Molins said the death toll was at least 120. His spokeswoman said eight assailants had also died, seven of whom had blown themselves up with explosive belts at various locations, while one had been shot dead by police.
As France awakened on Saturday, security was tight across the capital, where about 1,500 soldiers were deployed, leave was cancelled for police personnel and hospitals recalled staff to cope with the casualties.
Three restaurants and a shopping centre were also targeted in shooting attacks. VOC