Lara Prendergast

In their own words - the Paris attacks as told by the survivors

In their own words - the Paris attacks as told by the survivors
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Last night, terrorists launched a total of six coordinated attacks at high-profile sites across Paris. French prosecutors have put the current death toll at 128, with 99 critically injured.

  • There were two suicide bomb attacks at a bar near the Stade de France where President Hollande was watching the match.
  • One witness told the Mail:

    He felt like he was 'in a video game'. 'There was an explosion in front of us. It was a very loud noise. At first I thought it was a bin that had been set alight. But then I thought it wasn't a fire cracker.

    'Everyone stopped. A man was on the floor screaming. I don't know what happened to the man. I just heard him scream and move around the floor. He wasn't unconscious.'

    As he approached the stadium door around three minutes later, a second bomb went off 15ft from where he was standing. 

    He added: 'It was a very loud noise. I've never heard anything like it. My heart jumped. There were 20 of us. We started running. The match had started 15 minutes before. 

    'The doormen started locking the stadium doors... it was shocking to see. I thought, 'that could have been me'.'

    The sound of the attack could also be heard from within the stadium, where France was playing Germany:

    • At least three terrorists with AK47s  attacked the Bataclan concert hall, where the band Eagles of Death Metal was performing.
    • One witness told the Guardian:

      'It looked like a battlefield, there was blood everywhere, there were bodies everywhere. I was at the far side of the hall when shooting began. There seemed to be at least two gunmen. They shot from the balcony. 

      Another witness told the Telegraph:

      'Three men with Kalashnikovs and wearing flak jackets burst in in the middle of the concert.' He said the men were not wearing masks, adding: 'They just started spraying bullets. I saw a girl hit right in front of me. There must have been quite a few dead.'

      After the police entered the building, it was reported that the attackers detonated suicide vests. The attackers were killed and some of the hostages were released.

      • One terrorist killed at least 11 people at Le Petit Cambodge  restaurant on Rue Bichat.
      • One witness told the Guardian:

        He was standing in a shooting position. He had his right leg forward and he was standing with his left leg back. He was holding up to his left shoulder a long automatic machine gun – I saw it had a magazine beneath it.

        Everything he was wearing was tight, either boots or shoes and the trousers were tight, the jumper he was wearing was tight, no zippers or collars. Everything was toned black.

        If you think of what a combat soldier looks like, that is it – just without the webbing. Just a man in military uniform, black jumper, black trousers, black shoes or boots and a machine gun. Maybe a woolly hat.

        He was left-handed and shooting in bursts of three or four shots. It was fully intentional, professional bursts of three or four shots.

        He killed three or four individuals who were sitting in the chairs in front of the cafe. We saw them get shot down. They fell off their chairs on to the ground.

        He then swivelled and shot through a car driver’s window.

        We then saw him walk into the cafe. He swivelled right and then swivelled left and opened fire. That is when we dived for cover.

        We heard a total of maybe 15 or 20 shots, then everything went quiet.

        • There were also attacks on the Rue de Charonne and Boulevard Voltaire. A few hundred yards from the Bataclan, the terrace of the Casa Nostra pizzeria in Rue de la Fontaine au Roi was also reportedly targeted.