The Vatican has condemned a terrorist attack in Nice that has left at least 84 people dead.
A lorry rammed into a crowd celebrating Bastille Day on the Promenade des Anglais last night.
Fr Federico Lombardi, director of the Vatican press office, said: “We have followed during the night, with the greatest concern, the terrible news which has come from Nice.
“We want to make known, on the part of Pope Francis and ourselves, our sharing and solidarity in the suffering of the victims and all the French people, in what was supposed to be a great day of celebration.
“We condemn in an absolute manner every manifestation of homicidal folly, hatred, terrorism, and attacks against peace,” Fr Lombardi said.
The driver of the lorry, who was known to authorities, was shot dead by police. French president François Hollande said the attack was of a “terrorist nature” but no group has claimed responsibility for it yet.
“France was struck on the day of its national holiday, July 14, the symbol of liberty,” President Hollande said on national television, denouncing “this monstrosity” — a truck bearing down on citizens “with the intention of killing, smashing and massacring … an absolute violence”.
“All of France is under the threat of Islamic terrorists,” said Hollande.
The truck drove for two kilometres along the promenade. “A person jumped onto the truck to try to stop it,” Eric Ciotti told Europe 1 radio. “It’s at that moment that the police were able to neutralise this terrorist. I won’t forget the look of this policewoman who intercepted the killer.”
Flags have been lowered to half-staff in Nice and in Paris, and Hollande has extended the state of emergency imposed after the November bloodshed another three months.
Having been unable to sell in churches for well over a year due to the pandemic, we are now inviting readers to support the Herald by investing in our future. We have been a bold and influential voice in the church since 1888, standing up for traditional Catholic culture and values.
Please join us on our 130 year mission by supporting us. We are raising £250,000 to safeguard the Herald as a world-leading voice in Catholic journalism and teaching. For more information from our chairman on contributing to the Herald Patron's Fund, click here
Make a Donation
Donors giving £500 or more will automatically become sponsor patrons of the Herald. This includes two complimentary print/digital gift subscriptions, invitations to Patron events, pilgrimages and dinners, and 6 gift subscriptions sent to priests, seminaries, Catholic schools, religious care homes and prison and university chaplaincies. Click here for more information on becoming a Patron Sponsor. Click here for more information about contributing to the Herald Patron's Fund