Wales

Cardiff Bay vigil after French terror attacks

Carwyn Jones hands up a candle Image copyright Matthew Horwood
Image caption Carwyn Jones holds a glowing candle during the minute of silence

A vigil has taken place in Cardiff Bay for French citizens and others following terror acts in Paris which left 17 people dead in three days.

About 1,000 people gathered to observe a minute of silence and light candles in front of the Senedd.

There are over 2,000 French people living in south Wales registered with the French consulate in London.

Marie Brousseau-Navarro, the Honorary Consul of France in Cardiff, said messages of support had been touching.

She said: "We are united in shock and united in sorrow... And united with all the people who have marched across the world."

Saleem Kidwai, chairman of the Muslim Council of Wales was applauded by the crowd as he told them to "stand together shoulder to shoulder".

"My condemnation is absolute," he said.

"We will eventually win and truth wins over falsehood and light over darkness."

First Minister Carwyn Jones was among the many to hold up a candle for the silence, while others held up pencils. The silence was marked at the end by an applause.

Image copyright Matthew Horwood
Image copyright Matthew Horwood
Image copyright Matthew Horwood

Earlier, he said: "The vigil in Cardiff Bay tonight is an opportunity for the people of Wales to pay their respects to those who lost their lives in the truly abhorrent attack in Paris.

"It is also a chance to show solidarity with the people of France and all those who believe in upholding our democratic values and freedoms that are threatened by such senseless acts of terror."

Welsh Secretary Stephen Crabb tweeted earlier: "Standing with the French community in Wales and in support of freedom of speech everywhere. 6pm this eve. Senedd, Cardiff. #CharlieHebdo"

Solidarity

In a show of unity, London landmarks have been lit in the colours of the French national flag.

Image copyright Matthew Horwood

And world leaders have gathered in Paris for a huge unity march involving over one million people, dwarfing Saturday's marches that saw 700,000 take to the streets.

On Saturday, Swansea City striker Bafetimbi Gomis dedicated his side's goal in the 1-1 draw with West Ham to the victims of the Paris terror attacks.

Wales' police forces and media organisations held a minute's silence to support those attacked in the Charlie Hebdo massacre in Paris on Wednesday.

A police officer was killed on Thursday and French forces stormed two separate hostage sites in and around Paris, killing three hostage takers, on Friday.

"We have been really moved by the hundreds of messages of support and condolences," said Ms Brousseau-Navarro.

"Most of all we appreciate the support and solidarity."

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Media captionMarie Brousseau-Navarro, the Honorary Consul of France in Cardiff, said the vigil would show defiance to terrorism

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