On Bastille Day in France, the celebration in Nice was very far from pleasant. A truck driver reportedly drove into a crowd which had gathered to watch fireworks in commemoration of the day. So far, no fewer than 84 people have lost their lives, some under intensive care and many more injured.
The driver of the truck has been identified as a 31-year-old French-Tunisian, Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel. He worked as a delivery driver and he is thought to have a criminal record which included armed attacks, but was not on police’s radar for suspected radicalisation. Before he was shot dead by the Police, Bouhlel had reportedly opened fire on the crowd gathered for the Bastille Day celebration as well.
Bastille Day marks the storming of the Bastille prison on July 14, 1789, by angry Parisians. This seismic act demonstrated that ordinary people no longer accepted the absolute power of the King and was an important event during the French Revolution, which forced the creation of the modern French Republic.
Since the Paris attack, which claimed about 130 lives in November 2015, France has been placed under a state of emergency by its President. Following Thursday’s terror attack, President François Hollande has now announced a three-month extension of the state of emergency. Hollande had previously reflected on the already 8-month long security check measure, planning to end it.
Just as every leader across the globe continues to share this tragic moment with the people of France, the latest terror attack further reveals the need for a united fight against terror, which needs to happen through a stronger global stance against terrorism in any form. It was Orlando yesterday, it is Nice today, and no one knows where next, because terror has no respect for borders