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Romania expresses solidarity with France. Hundreds pay homage to Paris attacks victims at French embassy, sing ‘La Marseillaise’

Hundreds of persons came to the French Embassy in the Romanian capital on Sunday to pay homage to the victims of Paris deadly attacks on Friday that killed 129 people and wounded 352, with at least 90 of them in a serious medical state. Citizens of at least 15 countries, Romania included, are among the dead people in the six venues across Paris that were targeted on Friday evening. Gunmen opened fire at a rock concert and on customers in restaurants, while a series of bombs were detonated near the Stade de France, where the national side was playing Germany in an international friendly football match. The deadliest attack occurred at the Bataclan concert venue, where gunmen opened fire on a crowd watching US band Eagles of Death Metal perform, massacring at least 89.

The French Embassy in Bucharest organised a meeting of remembrance, solidarity and unity, which addressed “all the French nationals as well as those who wished to express support for France at these extremely painful moments”.

The participants sang “La Marseillaise” and observed a minute’s silence in memory of the victims of the horrific terrorist attacks in Paris.

The event was opened by French Ambassador Francois Saint-Paul and Romanian interim Prime Minister Sorin Cimpeanu.

Among those having come to the Embassy on Sunday to lay a bunch of flowers, light candles and write in the Book of Condolences were PM-designate Dacian Ciolos, former Presidents Ion Iliescu and Traian Basescu, Ombudsman Victor Ciorbea, PSD Chairman Liviu Dragnea, State Secretary at the Internal Affairs Ministry Raed Arafat, diplomats, former tennis star Ilie Nastase, politicians Monica Macovei, Serban Nicolae , Cristian Busoi, etc.


Interim PM Cimpeanu assures French ambassador of Romanian people’s cooperation, solidarity

Interim Prime Minister Sorin Cimpeanu told the meeting of commemoration, solidarity and unity having taken place at the French Embassy in Bucharest on Sunday that the Romanian people stands in solidarity with the French people.

“I assure you of the Romanian people’s cooperation and solidarity. France gave extremely important help for the Romanians during the Colectiv nightclub fire and Romania appreciates the gesture”, Cimpeanu said.

French Ambassador Francois Saint-Paul announced he had communicated to Paris the Romanian doctors’ readiness to help the hospitals in France. “I communicated to Paris this very generous offer, if the Romanian doctors can help the hospitals in France and we are waiting for the answer. I underline, this gesture is never forgotten”, the ambassador said.

He thanked Cimpeanu for having been the first to come to sign the Book of Condolences opened at the Embassy of France in memory of the victims of the terrorist attacks in Paris on Friday.

“Romania has seen a tragedy – ‘Colectiv’ – and I would like to also thank [Interior Ministry’s State Secretary Doctor] Raed Arafat for the cooperation we have developed with Romania. France was attacked in Paris and we will respond together”, the ambassador underscored.

Saint-Paul encouraged those attending the rally to write in the Book of Condolences.

“Vive la Roumanie, Vive la France”, the ambassador said.


French ambassador Saint-Paul: In war barbarism declared us, France to never surrender

The war declared by barbarism is not only against France, it is against common values and the common European future and the French people will never surrender, France’s Ambassador to Romania Francois Saint-Paul said on Sunday.

He made the remarks as he attended a French-German-Bulgarian ceremony marking the Truce after the First World War organised at Bellu Cemetery in the Romanian capital.

“Today’s ceremony has a second significance as well, since today we also honour yesterday’s dead and we think of the victims of this new war that barbarism has declared us. This war is not only against France, it is not only against a single country, is a war against values that we have in common. It is a war against freedom, against life, against all those things that make our life possible. France will be united, will be solidary and will be merciless”, Saint-Paul said.

The ambassador voiced certainty that all will be united and will stand together in the fight against barbarism.

“In this fight for our freedom, France will never give in, will never surrender and will not let itself be brought to its knees. I am certain that we will win together. I am certain that, by staying solidary we can win this war”, Saint-Paul added.

Attending the ceremony were the ambassadors of Germany, the United States, Britain, Bulgaria, representatives of the Romanian Presidential Administration, the Government, other public institutions as well as the former Royal House.


Acting PM Cimpeanu sents a letter of compassion and support to France’s PM

Romania’s interim Prime Minister Sorin Cimpeanu on Saturday said he sent a letter of compassion and support to France’s Prime Minister Manuel Valls in the wake of terrorist attacks in Paris on Friday night.

“I want to extend condolences form the Romanian Government over the victims of the deadly attacks in the capital city of France and in this respect I sent a letter of compassion and support to the French prime minister this morning. We are strongly condemning the terror attacks of Friday night in Paris. You may rest assured that Romania will continue support for the fight against international terror using all the means at its disposal,” Cimpeanu told journalists at a news conference at the Government House.

Cazanciuc: This type of event does nothing else but strengthen need of European solidarity
Justice Minister Robert Cazanciuc on Sunday expressed full solidarity with the suffering of all the victims of Paris attacks and stressed such type of event “will do nothing else but strengthen the need of solidarity and mutual support at a European level”.

“What is happening in France at this moment is painful and I express full solidarity with the suffering of all the victims of Paris attacks. Europe is most certainly being subjected to challenges that might appear to test the European construction. It is such type of event that I think will do nothing else but strengthen the need of solidarity and mutual support at a European level”, Cazanciuc said in an interview with Agerpres .
When asked how he sees Romania’s Schengen Area entry bid amid the new security context, the context of the Paris attacks and the refugee crisis across the European Union, the justice minister stressed that the moments when joining Schengen can be discussed are the JHA Councils, with the next such meeting to take place in March 2016.

“Maybe until that time we will succeed to discuss this European project too, while obviously taking into account the entire context, also starting from the compromise formulae proposed by Romania, namely partial accession with the air borders. It would be proof that Romanian meets the commitments it made. It would be proof that no matter what the tests Europe is subjected to, the solid projects must go on, even though they may suffer some adjustments”, Cazanciuc underscored.


Senate Chairman Tariceanu: Barbarity has no justification; no statute of limitation for such crimes

The Friday’s night terror attacks in Paris have revolted the entire civilised world, while the privileged friendship ties between Romania and France are more reason for solidarity and compassion from all Romanians, Chairman of the Romanian Senate Calin Popescu-Tariceanu said Saturday in a condolence post on the Senate’s webpage.

“The terror attacks in France that left more than 120 dead and some hundred injured, have revolted the entire civilised world. Barbarity has no excuse and such crimes have no statute of limitation. They are crimes against humanity and no religion, no nation in the world accept them. The Romanian Senate, on which behalf I am releasing this statement, is extending condolences to the families of the deceased while assuring all those who suffered in the criminal attacks of its entire compassion,” reads the post.

Tariceanu points out that the Senate and all the other fundamental organisations of the Romanian state will continue to provide actual, solidary support for the fight against terror, no matter where it may come from or where it may manifest itself.”.


Speaker Zgonea: Romania is with the French authorities, more united than ever against terror

Romania is with the French authorities, more united than ever in the fight against terror, Speaker of Romania’s Chamber of Deputies Valeriu Zgonea said Saturday.

”Our sorrow is all the more painful as two of the innocents who died in the atrocious attacks in Paris were Romanians. Our country is with the French authorities and we are more united than ever in the fight against terror. May God protect the injured and strengthen the families of the deceased!” said Zgonea in a Facebook post.


SRI’s Hellvig voices solidarity with France, extends full cooperation to international partners

Director of Romania’s Intelligence Service (SRI) Eduard Hellvig is voicing solidarity with France, while assuring SRI’s international partners of its full cooperation in the wake if the Friday’s night terror attacks in Paris.

In a statement posted on Facebook, SRI says it keeps the level of terrorist alert at blue, meaning cautious, which means available information and recent events indicate that there is a low risk of terrorist attack.

“SRI is strongly condemning the terrorist attacks in France and will continue to provide support, along with other organisations that are part of the national system of preventing and combating terrorism, to its international partners in the fight against terror. In Romania, the national terrorist alert level is kept at blue-cautious. That means available information and recent events indicate that there is a low risk of terrorist attack. There has been no intelligence so far leading to a connection between the events in France and the risks against Romania’s national security. The strategy of the Romanian Intelligence Service is to prevent any terror action, preserve a security climate for the citizens and protect the national territory,” reads the SRI post.


Islam Today Cultural Centre, Romania’s Islamic Cultural League: This is a moment when the society has to display its cohesion and compassion

The Islam Today Cultural Centre and Romania’s Islamic Cultural League are voicing regrets and outrage over the bloody attacks that happened on Friday night in Paris.

“Blind terrorism has once again reared its face and made victims among the innocents. This is a moment when the society has to display its cohesion and compassion, when Muslims and non-Muslims together are denouncing violent actions and the spread of terror,” reads a press statement released on Saturday by Chairman of the Islam Today Cultural Centre Abu al Ola al Ghithy.

The statement also reiterates the importance of condemning all acts of violence against civilians and the importance of joint action against the organisations and leaders that have led to the emergence of such events.

“If such events lead to a cessation of actions against ISIS and the dictatorship of Bashar, then they will be the beneficiaries of the violence and the number of killed civilians will increase. Such attacks are commonplace in Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Afghanistan as well as other countries. They have now affected a Western country that can play a very important part in their extermination. This is why it is all the more important for us to unite in this endeavour to fight against terrorism,” the statement reads.

The chairman of the Islam Today Cultural Centre also extended condolences to all the affected families. “We are praying for the quick recovery of the injured. Our hearts go out to the bereaved and the sufferers,” he says.


French Embassy in Bucharest reports consolidated security measures at all French official organisations in Romania

The French Embassy in Bucharest on Saturday reported that consolidated security measures have been taken at all French official organisations operating in Romania, in the wake of the Friday’s night terror attacks in Paris. It added that Romanian authorities are ready to take over injured in the attacks.

“Consolidated security measures have been taken thanks to the mobilisation of the Romanian authorities, around all French official organisations operating in Romania. The French Embassy wants to thank particularly the Romanian authorities for their promptitude in reaction and their readiness. (…) The Romanian authorities have got in contact with the French Embassy to offer to take over French injured in the attacks, thus remembering France’s solidarity over the fire tragedy in Bucharest nightclub Colectiv. France is thanking Romania for its proposal, which was forwarded to the relevant authorities of France,” the French Embassy says in a press statement.

The embassy also reports that a meeting for remembrance, solidarity and unity will be held on Sunday before its building at 14:00hrs, EET, where expected to attend are “all the French people and those who want to express support for France at this very painful moment.”

All the French national flags in Romania were hoisted at half-mast on Saturday, while the Elvire Popescu cinema hall of Bucharest City closed throughout November 18. The French Institute of Romania has cancelled or rescheduled its cultural events as well its local antennas, November 16-20.

“An online book of condolences has been opened on the website of the French Embassy. Another such book will open before the French Embassy in Bucharest at 13:00hrs, EET. The book will stay open for the public between 09:00hrs020:00hrs,” reads the embassy’s statement released on Saturday.

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