French authorities are saying that the number of dead in the “ISIS” terrorist attack is set at 128, although the death toll is expected to fluctuate as the situation becomes clearer, reports CNN.com on Saturday. In an online statement distributed by supporters Saturday, ISIS said eight militants wearing explosive belts and armed with machine guns attacked precisely selected areas in the French capital. A Syrian passport was found near the body of an attacker outside one of the targeted sites, the Stade de France, according to a police source, CNN affiliate France 2 and other French media reported. In addition to those killed, 180 others were injured, according to the Paris Police Prefecture. More than half of them are in critical condition.
President Barack Obama vowed “solidarity” called the attacks an “outrageous attempt to terrorize innocent civilians,” during a statement on Friday in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House. Obama added, “This is an attack not just on Paris, it’s an attack not just on the people of France, but this is an attack on all of humanity and the universal values that we share.” President Obama promised to “Provide whatever assistance that the government and the people of France need to respond,” said Obama. He acknowledged, “France is our oldest ally.”
Obama vowed to “Stand together with them in the fight against terrorism and extremism.” The White House reported that President Obama spoke by phone with President Francois Hollande of France to offer the condolences of the American people for the horrific terrorist attacks in Paris. Obama reiterated the “United States’ steadfast, unwavering support for the people of France, our oldest ally and friend, and reaffirmed the offer of any necessary support to the French investigation. The two leaders pledged to work together, and with nations around the world, to defeat the scourge of terrorism.”
The USA Today reported Pope Francis in an interview, “I am close to the people of France, to the families of the victims, and I am praying for all of them,” said the pontiff. “I am moved and I am saddened. I do not understand, these things hard to understand.”
“There is no religious or human justification for (the attacks),” he added. The pontiff also called the attacks “a piece” of the “piecemeal Third World War.”
Vice President Joe Biden also issued a statement saying that he joined President Obama in “Offering my deepest condolences to all those wounded and to the families who lost loved ones in today’s terrorist attacks in Paris. It’s heartbreaking. Outrageous. The American people understand and share the pain the people of Paris are going through. As these tragic events unfold, the investigation continues, and we learn all of the details of what’s happened, the United States stands ready to support the French government and the people of Paris.” Biden promised “We will respond. We will overcome. We will endure.”
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the leading Democratic candidate for President issued a statement: “All our prayers are with the people of France tonight. We must stand side-by-side every step of the way with France and our allies around the world to wage and win the struggle against terrorism and violent extremism. Even in this darkest night, Paris remains the City of Light. No terrorist attack will ever dim the spirit of the French people or our common commitment to the democratic values we share.”
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said, “Tonight the City of Chicago stands shoulder to shoulder with the City of Paris in the wake of today’s despicable and horrifying attacks. For nearly 20 years Chicago and Paris have been sister cities, united by a free and rich exchange of culture. I speak for all Chicago when I say that we are saddened and sickened by what has taken place tonight and our thoughts and prayers remain with the victims, their families, and with all of the French people.”