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Thursday, January 8, 2015

'I Am Charlie' Vigils Spread Worldwide

 "Je Suis Charlie," read signs at silent vigils around the world as thousands of people gathered to express their horror and outrage at the terrorist attack on Paris satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo. Around 35,000 people gathered in Paris' Place de la Republique, with many leaving candles and piles of pens at memorials to pay tribute to the 12 dead journalists, cartoonists, and police officers, the BBC reports. "These killers tried to kill not only people but also the idea of peace and debate," a Muslim schoolteacher carrying one of the newspaper's controversial cartoons at the Paris vigil told the Independent. "I won't let them do that and everyone in France won't let them do that. They had no right to use the name of Allah. Mohammed would be turning in his grave. Tonight we are all Charlie."

Across France, the number of people at vigils ran into the hundreds of thousands, with vigils also taking place across Europe and worldwide. In New York City, where security has been stepped up at buildings such as the French consulate, a crowd gathered in Union Square sang the French national anthem and held pictures of the victims, reports CBS. There has also been a huge outpouring of support online, with hashtags like #IamCharlie trending, and social media users sharing images like a picture of a machine gun with the slogan "This is not a religion," the AP reports.

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