Breaking News: Bastille Day Massacre
In what is being described in local media reports as a terrorist attack, a truck driver sped along Promenade des Anglais in Nice, France, plowing through and over people in the crowd – using his truck as a weapon.
Initial reports estimated more than 30 dead, but that has been recently updated to up tp 73 killed.
The large crowd was celebrating the French national day, Bastille Day, along the waterfront, and the calamity took place as the fireworks were ending, which added to the confusion when gunfire was heard.
An eyewitness account says the area was blocked off to traffic but somehow the large truck got through a blockade and started running through the celebratory crowd. Unconfirmed reports say the driver began shooting into the crowd before ramming the large, white, panel truck through revelers and continuing to progress along the street for a couple of kilometres.
The suspect was neutralized by police, but not before hundreds of people were injured and more than 70 people were killed.
The truck was loaded with explosives and grenades.
Earlier in the day, President François Hollande had told reporters that, on July 26, France would end the state of emergency that had been put in place after the Nov. 2015 militant Islamist attacks on Paris. "We can't extend the state of emergency indefinitely, it would make no sense. That would mean we're no longer a republic with the rule of law applied in all circumstances," Hollande told journalists in a traditional interview on Bastille day, France's national day.
Estimates put the number of people attending the National Day celebration at more than 40,000 people in the area. Global leaders are tweeting their shock and dismay, expressing their solidarity with France at this time.