FRANCE (VOP TODAY NEWS) — A massive fire broke out Monday at the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris, triggering the collapse of its historic tower and a shock in France and the West.
The mayor of Paris described Hidalgo as a “terrible fire” as the French gathered in the vicinity of the famous religious and tourist edifice. They were horrified to see the flames engulf the roof of the cathedral and its tower.
“I am sad this evening to see part of us burn,” President Emmanuel Macron said.
Firefighters said the fire was “probably linked” to the cathedral’s restoration workshop, which broke out a few days before Catholic Christians celebrated Easter.
Television and social networking sites in France broadcast scenes and scenes of fire that consumed the roof of the church as the area covered a thick cloud of smoke.
The fire broke out at around 1650 GMT in the Gothic cathedral built between the 12th and 14th centuries, the fire brigade said.
The fire quickly broke into the 93-meter-high cathedral tower.
“A special team has been mobilized to try to salvage all the existing artifacts,” said the assistant mayor of Paris, Emmanuel Gregoire.
In an indication of the seriousness of what is happening, Macaron decided to postpone his upcoming television talk about the yellow jacket crisis, without giving the French presidency a new date.
“Fire is a terrible fire in Notre Dame Cathedral, firefighters are trying to control the fire,” Hidalgo wrote on Twitter.
For his part, US President Donald Trump described the fire as “terrible” and suggested the use of aircraft dedicated to fighting fires.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Monday that Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris was “a symbol of France” and “our European culture.”
UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay stressed the organization’s position “along with France to protect and restore this priceless heritage.”
“A great symbol of Catholic faith is burning,” said a spokesman for the bishops’ compound in France.
Hundreds of Parisians and tourists were watching with concern the heavy smoke rising from the Paris bridges leading to the church, with a smell in the air.
“This is mad, I can not believe it, I want to cry,” said Natalie, 50, a Frenchwoman based in London.
“I hope it is not an attack,” said another.
The cathedral has five martyrs every day and seven on Sundays. It is visited by about 13 million tourists each year.
Video provided by CNBC Television channel. – edited and published by VOP staff in our newsroom.
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