Cardinal Vincent Nichols has expressed his horror after three people were murdered before Mass in the basilica in Nice, France.
French police have confirmed they are treating the killings, which occurred on 29th October, as a terrorist incident. The attacks came less than two weeks after a Paris teacher was beheaded on 16th October by a Muslim migrant; the teacher had shown satirical cartoons of the prophet Muhammad to school children in a lesson about free speech.
“I am horrified to hear of the fatal attacks in the Cathedral of Nice,” said Cardinal Nichols. “People have been killed in a sacred place, which they had entered in order to pray.
“I know the Basilica well. It is much loved by the people of Nice and by so many visitors. Its violation deepens the horror of three brutal killings. May these three innocent people rest in peace. May all people reject utterly the pathway of senseless violence. May God bless Nice.”
The Archbishop of Birmingham, Bernard Longley, Chair of the Bishops’ Conference Department of Dialogue and Unity added: “I am horrified by this senseless act of violence.
“My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families and for the French nation as it comes together to mourn the loss of the three people killed in today’s knife attack.
“I also hold in my prayers the teacher Samuel Patty and the victims of the 2016 Nice truck attack.”
Picture: Police stand near Notre Dame Basilica in Nice, France, on 29th October 2020, after at least three people were killed in a series of stabbings before Mass. France raised its alert level to maximum after the attack. (CNS photo/Eric Gaillard, pool via Reuters).