Members of Los Angeles’ French-American community hold signs reading “I'm Charlie” and “Je Suis Charlie” at a gathering in solidarity with those killed in an attack on the weekly newspaper Charlie Hebdo January 7.
Demonstrations in support of freedom of expression took place across the United States in the wake of an assault that killed at least 12 in Paris, while U.S. leaders condemned the act of terrorism and offered France condolences and support.
“I strongly condemn the horrific shooting at the offices of Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris,” President Obama said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of this terrorist attack and the people of France at this difficult time.”
Obama, who spoke with French President François Hollande on the day of the attack, said he has directed his administration to provide France with any needed assistance to bring the perpetrators of the crime to justice.
France and the United States share a commitment to those who wield a pen as an instrument of freedom, Secretary of State John Kerry said January 7. “Free expression and a free press are core values, they are universal values, principles that can be attacked but never eradicated, because brave and decent people around the world will never give in to the intimidation and the terror that those seeking to destroy those values employ.”
On January 8, France marked a day of mourning as a manhunt continued for the two main suspects.