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Paris attack victims’ groups testify to lack of preparation

Groups representing the victims of the November 13 jihadist attacks in Paris have begun providing chilling testimony to parliamentary investigators, denouncing what they called “an atrocious lack of preparation” for an emergency in which 130 people lost their lives.

“We have a thousand questions and we expect answers,” says Georges Salines, head of one of several victims’ associations represented Monday at the first of a series of hearings to be held over coming weeks.

Salines, a doctor, says he learned of his daughter’s death at the Bataclan concert hall the day after the massacre there of 90 people at the hands of jihadist gunmen.

Recounting how he had heard of the death only indirectly through Twitter, he denounces an “atrocious lack of preparation” in terms of information-sharing on the bloody night itself and over the following days.

The commission of inquiry was set up at the request of the conservative opposition Republican party to look into the Socialist government’s efforts to counter the terror threat since the previous set of attacks to rock France — the assault in January 2015 that began with the killings at the Charlie Hebdo satirical weekly and ended with 17 dead over three days.

AFP

Jean-Baptiste Redde aka Voltuan holds up a banner that reads, "We must remember" following a remembrance rally attended by the President of France at Place de la Republique on January 10, 2016 in Paris, France (AFP PHOTO / DOMINIQUE FAGET)
Jean-Baptiste Redde aka Voltuan holds up a banner that reads, “We must remember” following a remembrance rally attended by the President of France at Place de la Republique on January 10, 2016 in Paris, France (AFP PHOTO / DOMINIQUE FAGET)

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