France Blames ISIS for Paris Attacks

Group claims responsibility for 'act of war'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 14, 2015 5:47 AM CST
A couple conforts each other outside the Bataclan concert hall after a shooting in Paris, France, Saturday, Nov. 14, 2015.    (AP Photo/Kamil Zihnioglu)
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(Newser) – French President Francois Hollande blamed ISIS for orchestrating the deadliest attacks inflicted on France since World War II and vowed Saturday to strike back without mercy at what he called "an act of war." Hollande said at least 127 people died Friday night in shootings at Paris cafes, suicide bombings near France's national stadium, and a hostage-taking slaughter inside a concert hall. Speaking after an emergency security meeting to plan his government's response, Hollande declared three days of national mourning and raised the nation's security to its highest level. He blamed the carnage on what he called "a jihadist army, against France, against the values that we defend everywhere in the world, against what we are: a free country that means something to the whole planet."

As Hollande spoke, French anti-terror police worked to identify potential accomplices to the attackers known to have committed the attacks, while the perpetrators, at least in public, remained a mystery: their nationalities, their motives, even their exact number. Authorities said eight died, seven in suicide bombings, a new terror tactic in France. Police said they shot and killed the other assailant. In a statement released online Saturday, ISIS claimed responsibility. It was not immediately possible to confirm the authenticity of the statement, but it bore the group's logo and resembled previous statements issued by the group.

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