Wearside MP: ‘We stand side-by-side with our neighbours’ after Nice terror attack

Bridget Phillipson
Bridget Phillipson
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A Wearside MP has spoken of her horror at the attack in France that left dozens dead overnight.

At least 84 people, including several children, have died after a terrorist drove a truck through crowds celebrating Bastille Day in Nice.

My thoughts are with the French people at this time. We stand side-by-side with our neighbours to tackle this pressing threat that we all face.

Bridget Phillipson

Eyewitnesses said the killer swerved from side to side to kill as many people as possible as he drove for hundreds of metres along the Promenade des Anglais on the seafront of the city in the south of France.

At first horrified onlookers assumed the driver had lost control.

Houghton and Sunderland South MP Bridget Phillipson said: “This is an appalling attack.

“My thoughts are with the French people at this time. We stand side-by-side with our neighbours to tackle this pressing threat that we all face.”

French President Francois Hollande led a wave of condemnation from world leaders, saying: “France has been hit by a tragedy once again. This monstrosity of using a lorry to deliberately kill people, many people, who only came out to celebrate their national day.

“France is in tears. It is hurting but it is strong, and she will be strong, always stronger than the fanatics who wish to hurt us.”

He also said a military operation was in place which would allow the mobilisation of 10,000 troops and that police from across the country would be called to assist their colleagues in Nice.

The country’s borders were being tightened, said Mr Hollande, as he vowed that France would show “real force and military action in Syria and Iraq”.

In a press conference at the scene, French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said: “We are in a war with terrorists who want to strike us at any price and in a very violent way.”

Nice regional president Christian Estrosi said guns and grenades were found in the lorry.

The politician, who was at the celebration when the carnage happened, said: “This is the worst Nice drama of history.

“We are terrified and we want to present to all the families our sincere condolences.”