Arab states condemn ‘terrorist’ Paris attacks
Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Kuwait, Qatar and Egypt have been among the Arab states leading condemnations of the simultaneous attacks in Paris that killed more than 140 people late Friday.
A Saudi foreign ministry source said the kingdom “strongly denounces the terror explosions,” and urged for global solidarity.
The statement added: “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia recalls that it has previously underscored the importance of the world community stand united to double its effort to root out this dangerous and destructive plague which targets the security and stability of the entire world.”
Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister gave a statement on the attacks on Saturday as he arrived in Vienna for talks on ending Syria’s civil war.
“I wanted to express our condolences to the government and people of France for the heinous terrorist attacks that took place yesterday which are in violation and contravention of all ethics, morals and religions,” Adel al-Jubeir told reporters in Vienna.
“The kingdom of Saudi Arabia has long called for more intensified international efforts to combat the scourge of terrorism in all its forms and shapes,” he said.
The source added that an effective means for joint international action was needed to fight those who sought “to harm global security under any pretext.”
Meanwhile, Qatar’s foreign minister said the attacks violate all human and moral values.
“The state of Qatar, through its foreign minister, strongly condemns these heinous attacks that have struck the French capital causing so many victims,” Khaled al-Attiyah said in a statement sent to Reuters by the embassy in Paris.
“These acts, which target stability and security in France are against all human and moral values,” he added.
Jordan’s King Abdullah, meanwhile, expressed “deep regret and sadness” over the Paris attacks, also pledging solidarity with France.
In a statement from the UAE press agency, President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan offered his condolences to French President Francois Hollande, who had earlier declared a state of emergency across the country after the attacks. Sheikh Khalifa also said his country strongly condemns the attacks.
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi offered his condolences and “expressed his solidarity” with Paris, in a statement from the official news agency.
“Such terrorist attacks will not weaken the will of peace-loving countries,” Sisi was quoted as saying by a foreign ministry source.
Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Sabah, meanwhile, sent a “cable of condolence” to Hollande, condemning “these criminal acts of terrorism which run counter to all teachings of holy faith and humanitarian values.”
He reaffirmed Kuwait’s solidarity with the French people and government, saying Kuwait supports all measures France might take to protect its security against the terror attacks,
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan offered his condolences after the attacks, calling for “a consensus of the international community against terrorism”.
“As a country that knows very well the manner and consequences of terrorism, we understand perfectly the suffering that France is experiencing now,” he said in a short televised statement.
Shock across the world
Across the world, leaders have also responded with shock and pledges of solidarity for France.
The United Nations Security Council issued a statement condemning “barbaric and cowardly terrorist attacks” involving assailants using guns and bombs on several venues, including the national sports stadium and a major music venue.
Divided on many issues, including on the war in Syria that has fueled Islamist violence, the United States and Russia both voiced their support in messages to French President Francois Hollande.
“Once again we’ve seen an outrageous attempt to terrorize innocent civilians,” said U.S. President Barack Obama. “We stand prepared and ready to provide whatever assistance that the government and the people of France need.”
“Those who think that they can terrorise the people of France or the values that they stand for are wrong,” Obama said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin sent his deep condolences to Hollande and all the people of France following the “horrible terrorist attacks in Paris”, the Kremlin said in a statement.
“Russia strongly condemns this inhumane killing and is ready to provide any and all assistance to investigate these terrorist crimes.”
The Western defence alliance NATO said it stood with France, a founder member. Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said, “I am deeply shocked by the horrific terrorist attacks across Paris tonight. My thoughts are with the families of the victims, with all those affected, and with the people of France.
“We stand strong and united in the fight against terrorism. Terrorism will never defeat democracy.”
In Europe, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, whose foreign minister was attending a France-Germany soccer match with Hollande when the stadium was attacked, said, “I am deeply shaken by the news and pictures that are reaching us from Paris.
“The German government is in contact with the French government and has passed on a message of sympathy and solidarity from the German people.”
British Prime Minister David Cameron said, “I am shocked by events in Paris tonight. Our thoughts and prayers are with the French people. We will do whatever we can to help.”