A black ribbon was tied to the top of the pole bearing the French flag at the country’s diplomatic mission in Delhi, as France mourned their dead and French citizens in India paid homage to their countrymen who lost their lives in the Paris terror attack.
The one-minute silence observed across France and Europe was part of the three-day mourning announced by the French government following the attacks on November 13, which claimed 129 lives and injured 252 others. Calling the attack “an act of war”, French Ambassador François Richier repeated the motto of the city of Paris — Fluctuat nec mergitur —a Latin phrase meaning “tossed but not sunk”, at a memorial event at the French Embassy.
Ambassador Richier said that France will not allow the attack to “divide the French people, among them many Muslims, whose forefathers had fought in several wars for France”. He also said that the Conference of Parties (CoP21) on climate change, scheduled to be held on November 30, has not been cancelled. However, certain events planned alongside the conference could be cancelled for security reasons.
Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju, who attended the event, said the people of India are “no strangers to the pain and suffering inflicted by such senseless acts of violence as the country has been a victim of terror for the last four decades.”
That doesn’t, however, lessen the sense of outrage, grief and shock when they happen, whether in India or anywhere else, said Rijiju.
“We share your pain in this hour of tragedy and stand with you shoulder-to-shoulder, ready to assist the government and the people of France in facing this tragedy and in ensuring that such assaults on humanity do not recur anywhere,” he said.
Referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s statement at the G-20 summit, the minister said, “the time has come for the world to speak in one voice and act in unison against terrorism, without any narrow considerations…”.