Je Suis Charlie >> Paris >>>11th January 2015
On 7 January 2015, two masked gunmen forced their way into the offices of the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo in Paris, killing 12 employees. Another gunman shot a Police officer on the 8th, and took hostages the next day at a kosher supermarket in the heart of Paris, where 4 innocent victims also lost their lives. Three of the 4 terrorists have been killed by Police forces, and one is still on the run.
Last weekend I joined over 1.5 million supporters, and 40 world leaders along the streets of Paris in a rally of national unity in support of free speech and freedom of expression. The attacks were the deadliest acts of terrorism in France since the 60s, and I was there to witness the unified solidarity of the city in the wake of the most extraordinary week Paris had faced in decades.
The phrase Je suis Charlie (French for “I am Charlie”) came to be a common worldwide sign of solidarity against the attacks.
French Artist JR had created these ‘Eyes’ which joined the rally at the start of the walk
The remaining staff of Charlie Hebdo announced that publication was to continue, with plans for a print run of three million copies for the 14 January 2015 issue, rather than its typical 60,000. The “survivors’ issue” of Charlie Hebdo will also be sold outside France. Supporters and the publicity raise the number to 5 million copy.
A dark day for Paris, but an incredible feeling to walk with everyone…