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Politicians to pay tribute to Paris terror victims

Published 15/11/2015

Tributes are left at the La Carillon restaurant in Paris
Tributes are left at the La Carillon restaurant in Paris

The Dail and Northern Ireland Assembly will fall silent next week as politicians on both sides of the border pay tribute to the victims of the Paris attacks.

The acts of remembrance by the two legislatures in Dublin and Belfast follow public vigils across the island in the wake of Friday's violence.

The one Irish citizen injured in the attacks in France remained in a stable condition in hospital on Sunday.

It is understood the man sustained gunshot wounds in the mass shootings at the Bataclan theatre.

On Sunday the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin said there remained no indication any other Irish citizens were caught up in the bloodshed.

Thousands of people marched in O'Connell Street in Dublin city centre to show solidarity with the French people on Saturday while hundreds attended a candlelit vigil in Galway later that night.

In Belfast, the landmark City Hall was illuminated in the colours of the French tricolour.

On Monday, Northern Ireland Assembly members at Stormont will be invited to attend a minute's silence in the Great Hall of Parliament Buildings. The opening of Assembly business will also be set aside for MLAs to express condolences.

Similar events will take place on the next day of scheduled business in the Dail on Tuesday.

The government's chief whip, Paul Kehoe TD, said: "The atrocities in Paris have appalled the Irish people and, as is fitting, the national parliament will mark these terrible events when business resumes on Tuesday with a minute's silence in memory of the victims, followed by statements to express our sympathy and solidarity with their families, friends and all of the French people on behalf of the Irish people."

In Northern Ireland, newly-elected SDLP leader Colum Eastwood paid tribute to the Paris victims at the party's conference in Armagh.

"We in this small part of Europe know what it's like to face the threat of violence," he said.

"We also know and understand the words of Victor Hugo - 'Even the darkest night will end and the sun will rise'.

"Our thoughts and prayers go to the people of France and Paris, and we stand in solidarity with them."

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