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Source: http://edition.cnn.com/2015/01/11/world/charlie-hebdo-paris- march/index.html
Array of world leaders joins 3.7 million in France to defy terrorism
By Ashley Fantz, CNN
Updated 0849 GMT (1649 HKT) January 12, 2015
least 3.7 million people, including world leaders, marched in
anti-terrorism rallies in Paris and elsewhere in France on Sunday,
French officials said, calling the massive gathering in the nation's
capital the largest in France's history.
The day was emotional and peaceful, a gesture of unity just days after Islamic extremists slaughtered 17 people.
leaders joined French President Francois Hollande, including British
Prime Minister David Cameron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and
Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy. The day also brought together an
unlikely duo at the rally: Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas
and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
A photographer captured Merkel leaning her head gently on Hollande's shoulder.
The rally began with a march through
Paris streets at 3 p.m., but a massive group of people stayed into the
night. Among them was Dalil Boubakeur, the rector of the Great Mosque of
Paris and president of the French Council of the Muslim Faith.
One man in the crowd said the French people must not "give in to fear." Terrorists, he said, "will not win."
Others carried signs that echoed the
now-famous phrase that honored slain journalists at the magazine
Charlie Hebdo, "Je suis Charlie."
El Rhazoui, a journalist at the magazine, talked about the magazine's
financial struggles and the difficulty of working under constant
threats: "I am very happy for all this help, but for us, it was a heavy
price to pay, and it is too much.
"It took 12 deaths for us to finally be a little bit understood after we have been hated and booed by everybody."
the guards and police officers who lost their lives in last week's
attacks in France, there were signs reading "We are all cops."
Muslims in France who want to convey that the ideology embraced by the
Muslim gunmen does not represent the whole of the faith, signs read "We
are all Muslims."
For everyone, no matter their race, class or ethnic background, signs that said "We are all French" were held up with pride.
End to a bloody week
Sunday brought the end to a traumatic week in France.
Brothers Cherif and Said Kouachi, the Charlie Hebdo gunmen, were killed Friday after one of two violent standoffs. Twelve people were slain at the satirical magazine offices on Wednesday.
the other standoff, Amedy Coulibaly, suspected in the shooting death of
a police officer, was killed by security forces Friday after he shot
and killed four hostages during a siege at a kosher market.
French law enforcement officers were
told to remove their social media presence and carry their weapons at
all times, because terror sleeper cells had been activated over the past
24 hours in the country, a French police source who attended a briefing
Saturday told CNN terror analyst Samuel Laurent.
Coulibaly had made several phone calls about targeting police officers in France, according to the source.
video that appears to show Coulibaly pledging allegiance to terror
group ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is being shared on Jihadist
Brian Hale, the spokesman for
the U.S. director of national intelligence, told CNN on Sunday that the
U.S. intelligence community is "aware of the video and is reviewing it
to determine its authenticity."
Threats against people outside of France, particularly against journalists, persisted Sunday.
offices of Belgian newspaper Le Soir were evacuated Sunday after
members of the newsroom received an anonymous phone call of a bomb
threat, the newspaper reported. Police locked down the street where paper operates.
officials in the New York City Police Department responded to a threat
from ISIS after someone re-released a September 2014 message that tells
followers to "rise up and kill intelligence officers, police officers,
soldiers, and civilians," specifically naming the United States, France,
Australia and Canada as targets.
employees were told to "remain alert and consider tactics at all times
while on patrol," especially in light of the attacks in France last
week, in an internal memo.
Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security
issued a similar bulletin to law enforcement. Both notices make clear
that the threat is consistent with previous threats ISIS and others,
including al Qaeda, have made.
'We are not terrorists'
investigators worked leads, a sea of demonstrators in Paris broke into
song, held hands, cheered and passionately denounced violence.
imam and a number of Muslims were in the crowd. A young Muslim French
woman held a sign that said, "I am a Jew." She told CNN's Frederik
Pleitgen that she was horrified to hear of the killings, and the killers
do not live according to the Islamic principles she's been taught.
religion is the religion of love. ... Our religion loves Jews ... loves
Christians. We are not terrorists," one Muslim man said, his voice
He lifted his arm and gestured to many people around him who came to denounce violence: "We are all Muslim!"
officials announced "exceptional measures" to protect the throngs
gathered near the Place de la Republique in central Paris, and a who's
who of foreign leaders at the rally -- a test of the security forces of a
nation rocked by days of terrorist violence.
the rally, Hollande arrived to huge applause and a cheering crowd at
the Synagogue de la Victoire to show support for France's Jews. He was
joined by Netanyahu.
The targeting of
the kosher grocery store shook the nation's Jewish communities. Amid
heightened security concerns, the synagogue was closed Saturday for the
first time since World War II.
Sunday, "Jerusalem of Gold" -- a popular song by Naomi Shemer that
became an anthem during the Six-Day War in 1967 -- played in the place
World leaders -- but no Obama
It was just one of several gestures of solidarity Sunday among some of the world's most influential leaders.
Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu,
Jordan's King Abdullah II and Queen Rania were at the rally.
people in the crowd and on social media wondered why U.S. President
Barack Obama was not there; he was at the White House on Sunday.
CNN has asked for an explanation from the State Department and White House of his absence. There has been no response so far.
Secretary of State John Kerry was not at the rally either.
senior State Department official told CNN that Kerry had committed a
long time ago to be the lead speaker at Indian Prime Minister Narendra
Modi's entrepreneurship and innovation summit in India. The official
said that Kerry did not want to cancel that as he continues to work on
the United States' relationship with the nation.
General Eric Holder was not at the rally but was in Paris this weekend
to attend a security summit on combating terrorism. He recorded
interviews that aired in the U.S. on Sunday.
Ambassador to France Jane Hartley represented the United States at the rally. She tweeted several images of the crowd.
Speaking on air with CNN's Jake Tapper, who was at the rally, "Global Public Square" host Fareed Zakaria tried to put Obama and other senior leaders' absence in context.
Zakaria called it a mistake.
is the United States' "deepest ideological ally," he said, and it would
have been a meaningful image to have a senior administration member, or
the President, standing shoulder to shoulder with other leaders.
Tapper noted that security has been
tenuous. Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve and other officials said
2,300 police officers, as well as paramilitary forces, would be deployed
Sunday. The dignitaries and leaders were to be protected by special
Police snipers, plainclothes and
anti-terror officers were deployed, and parking and transit
restrictions were in place. The government planned to close large
sections of the city to traffic, Cazeneuve said.
observed that security concerns didn't dissuade Netanyahu or Abbas or
other controversial leaders from showing up. The bright side, he said,
is that Obama's absence showed that the struggle against radical Islam
is "not all about America."
people have tended to think that Islamic terrorism wouldn't exist
without America," Zakaria said. "This is really a struggle between the
civilized world and a band of extremists. Even if you take the U.S. out
of it ... the civilized world is up in arms."
investigators are still trying to piece connections between three
terror suspects killed Friday and their suspected links to al Qaeda in
the Arabian Peninsula and other terrorist groups. Security will remain
heightened as the investigations continue, officials have said.
Evan Perez, Lorenzo Ferrigno, Laurie Segall, Pamela Brown, Kristina
Sgueglia, Kevin Bohn, Ray Sanchez and Jim Sciutto contributed to this