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PRESS RELEASE – Prime Minister and Minister For Finance, Economic Affairs, Planning & Social Security, Hon. Dr. Kenny D. Anthony has called on France’s Ambassador to Saint Lucia and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States, His Excellency, Eric de La Moussaye, to express his sympathy in the wake of last week’s deadly terrorist attacks in the French capital, Paris.
On Wednesday, January 8th, gunmen stormed the offices of satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, killing 10 journalists and two police officers. It was one of several attacks across France.
Through the ambassador, Dr. Anthony extended his condolences to the Government and people of France, praising them for their response to the tragedy. Dr. Anthony said: “The Government of Saint Lucia condemns the perpetrators of this shocking and horrific action in the strongest possible terms, and our Government and people join the rest of the world in mourning the senseless murder of your citizens. France has been a bastion of liberty, freedom of speech, freedom of association, and freedom of expression. Last week’s unconscionable attack was an assault on the very bedrock on which democracy is founded.”
On Friday, two suspects were killed by police outside of Paris. Two days later, world leaders joined millions of people in unity marches throughout France. In Paris alone, up to 1.6 million gathered, and there were rallies worldwide, in London, Madrid, Cairo, Montreal, Beirut, Sydney, Tokyo, Madrid, London, Washington, Montreal and Berlin.
Dr. Anthony added: “We stand with the people of France, especially the bereaved families, in your moment of grief, even as you stand shoulder to shoulder in the wake of this barbaric act. Under the leadership of President Francois Hollande, the response of the French people has been commendable and inspirational. The people of Saint Lucia join in your demonstration of solidarity against the climate of fear that these cowardly attackers intended to instill.”
On Wednesday 14th January 2015, the French Embassy in Saint Lucia and the Alliance Française of Saint Lucia will pay tribute to those who lost their lives in the recent attacks. A condolence book will be opened to the public at the Alliance Française.