Barack Obama visits French Embassy to offer condolences

Washington, Jan 9:  US President Barack Obama visited the French Embassy here to express solidarity with the people of France and said that Americans stand united with them in the aftermath of the terrorist attack in Paris.

"On behalf of all Americans, I extend our deepest sympathy and solidarity to the people of France following the terrible terrorist attack in Paris," Obama wrote in the book of condolences at the French Embassy. "As allies across the centuries, we stand united with our French brothers to ensure that justice is done and our way of life is defended," said Obama, who drove to the French Embassy on Thursday on his return from Arizona.

Obama visits French Embassy

"We go forward together knowing that terror is no match for freedom and ideals we stand for -- ideals that light the world. Vive la France!" wrote the US President, after which he observed a moment of silence. French Ambassador Gerard Araud wrote in a tweet that he was "deepl y moved" by the reactions of the American people, by all the expression of grief and support he received.

In his tweet, Araud welcomed Obama's signing of the book of condolence as "a moving and highly significant gesture." "The French are grateful," he wrote. Obama yesterday convened a call with his national security team. "They’re going to do a couple things on the call. The first is the President is going to get an update on the latest on the investigation that the French are conducting into the terror attacks that happened yesterday," White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said.

"The second is the President is going to get a review of terror threat information -- this is something the President does periodically and he convened a meeting shortly before the holidays to get an update on the terror threat, and he’s going to get a brief update on that today," he added.

Obama: We stand united with our French brothers to ensure that justice is done

Earnest said there have been frequent conversations between a variety of American national security officials and their French counterparts, including conversations between members of intelligence community. "But I'm not in a position to talk about the details or the content of those conversations," he said.

In a statement, Senator John McCain said the American people stand united with friend and ally to condemn the cowardly terrorists who committed this heinous atrocity. "America needs a real strategy to defeat violent Islamic extremism and its most brutal champions like ISIS and al Qaeda," McCain said.

"To date, this administration has failed to offer any coherent strategy, despite gathering threats to the security of our nation and our allies from the breathtaking carnage taking place in Syria in recent years. Indeed, the absence of effective US leadership has only emboldened our adversaries in the Middle East, as the power vacuum is filled by jihadists, sectarians and sworn enemies of America and our key regional partners," McCain said.


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