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In coordinated attacks at six sites across Paris, ISIS-linked terrorists used machine guns and suicide belts in the worst act of violence in France since World War II

11/14/2015 Washington D.C. (International Christian Concern) – International Christian Concern (ICC) condemns the horrific attacks and mourn with the families of those who lost loved ones and condemns the brutal attacks which took place across the heart of Paris on Friday evening. The Islamic State (IS, ISIS, Daesh) claimed responsibility for the attacks, threatening that the operation was the “first of the storm.”

“Let France and those who walk in its path know that they will remain on the top of the list of targets of the Islamic State, and that the smell of death will never leave their noses as long as they lead the convoy of the Crusader campaign, and dare to curse our Prophet,” ISIS said in a statement published in Arabic, French, English, and Russian, and distributed via social media, according to the SITE Intelligence group.

The statement praised the coordination of the attack, which targeted the Stade de France where the French and German national soccer teams were playing a match, with President Francois Hollande in attendance. The largest number of deaths came at Bataclan Conference Center where more than 100 were killed when militants stormed the concert hall just before a band was to take the stage. The attackers also struck at least four restaurants across the city.

At least eight individuals were responsible for the attacks, seven of them were killed by detonation of their suicide belts, and another was killed by police. As of early Saturday morning, it is unclear whether all those involved in the attacks have been killed, because the total numbers involved is unknown, the French Prosecutors office said. One of the attackers was identified as a French national and an individual known to the police, CNN reported, and a Syrian passport was found near the body of another of the attackers, but his identity remains unknown.

“France, because it was foully, disgracefully and violently attacked, will be unforgiving with the barbarians from Daesh,” Mr. Hollande said on Saturday, adding that France would act within the law but with “all the necessary means, and on all terrains, inside and outside, in coordination with our allies, who are, themselves, targeted by this terrorist threat.” President Hollande brought Paris under effective curfew for the first time since World War II, according to Euro News.

In a statement on Friday evening, President Obama said, “Once again, we’ve seen an outrageous attempt to terrorize innocent civilians. 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. […] The French people have stood shoulder to shoulder with the United States time and again. And we want to be very clear that we stand together with them in the fight against terrorism and extremism.”

The attacks came less than a year after attackers targeted the Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris. They also came the same day as suicide bombers also linked to ISIS struck in Baghdad, killing at least 18. Also, investigators are still pursuing the claims of ISIS responsibility for an attack that brought down a Russian airliner over Egypt. All part of the growing influence of ISIS and their expanded attacks on foreign governments that are involved in the war against ISIS militants in Iraq and Syria where they have gained control of large swaths of territory and explicitly targeted Christians and other religious minorities, becoming the primary cause of large-scale displacement.

Todd Daniels, Regional Manager for the Middle East, said, “The horrific attacks in Paris have claimed the lives of more than 120 individuals, injured hundreds more, and once again brought the reality of Islamic terrorism into the heart of Europe. We mourn with the families who have lost life and pray for healing and peace in Paris. It has highlighted once again the need to take concrete and decisive action to address the horrors of Islamic Terrorism which is not only committing horrific acts of terror in the West, but on a daily basis seeks to destroy the presence of Christianity in Iraq and Syria. This kind of terrorism has caused hundreds of thousands of Christians, and millions of other Iraqis and Syrians to flee their homes, desperate for refuge either in neighboring countries or if possible escaping to Europe or the West. The world is desperately in need of leadership to confront these evils, to bring justice to those responsible, and protection form those who face persecution at the hands of murders like those who struck Paris last night.”     

For interviews, contact Olivia Miller, Press Manager, International Christian Concern: press@persecution.org

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