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Old 03-07-2015, 10:21 AM   #18
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Minute's silence to be held for Britain's Tunisia attack victims on 3 July 2015


Guardian: Minute's silence to be held for Britain's Tunisia attack victims

Palace flags are lowered for the victims of the Tunisian beach attack

Damien Gayle, Chris Stephen in Sousse, and Matthew Weaver

Friday 3 July 2015 10.16 BST

Midday mark of respect planned and flags lowered to half-mast as bodies of 30 Britons continue to be repatriated and UK police contribute to investigation

Britain will hold an official minute’s silence at midday to mourn the British tourists killed in a gun massacre on a Tunisian beach last week.

Flags are being flown at half-mast over Whitehall and Buckingham Palace as a mark of respect for those killed in the deadliest terror attack for Britons since the bombings in London on 7 July 2005.

In Sousse, Britain’s ambassador to Tunisia, Hamish Cowell, diplomats from some of the nations that lost tourists, and Tunisian dignitaries will lay wreaths at the scene of the attack before observing a minute’s silence there.

Seven days ago Seifeddine Rezgui walked on to the beach at the El Kantaoui resort and opened fire, killing 38 people – including 30 UK nationals.

On the sand outside the Imperial Marhaba hotel where most of the tourists died, half a dozen improvised memorials have been scooped out of the sand. They are arranged around a large heart-shaped depression in the beach with flowers, candles and notes from well wishers.

One anonymous note, handwritten on Thomson Skytours notepaper and wedged in among wreaths of fast-drying flowers, reads: “There are no words to describe how we are all feeling but these poor souls will never be forgotten.”

Tunisian police patrol the beach where ambassadors and Tunisian officials will hold a minute’s silence. Photograph: Chris Stephen for the Guardian

Habib Daguib, who operates quad bikes for tourists along the beach, said: “Normally with each sunrise we say ‘Hamdullah, praise to God for the new day’, but this day we have a deep pain inside us.”

David Cameron, the British prime minister, has asked all government departments and official buildings in the UK, as well as embassies and military bases across the world, to fly their flags at half-mast for the day.

Local authorities, police forces and schools have been asked to observe the silence at midday. In train stations, posters have been put up and announcements will be made to remind passengers and staff.

Crowds and competitors are to due fall silent at Wimbledon, Henley Regatta, the British Grand Prix and the horse races in Doncaster, Newton Abbot, Sandown Park, Beverly and Haydock Park.

The government also contacted faith leaders to encourage their congregations to join the country in remembrance.

Wounded Britons – including four with severe injuries – have already been brought back to the UK. They are being treated at hospitals in Birmingham, Oxford, Plymouth and London.

The bodies of 17 victims have been repatriated since Wednesday, all flown to RAF Brize Norton. Mourning relatives watched as their coffins were unloaded by pallbearers from the RAF Regiment, Queen’s Colour Squadron.

More were expected to return on Friday and Saturday. Among the other victims were three Irish nationals, two Germans, one Belgian, one Portuguese and one Russian.

The first inquests into the deaths of the Britons will open at West London coroner’s court on Friday. The coroner, Chinyere Inyama, is expected to immediately adjourn the hearings in which a cause of death will be confirmed and the bodies will be released to families.

Tunisian authorities have detained eight people on suspicion of aiding Rezgui, and are searching for two others believed to have trained with him in Libya. Four others have been questioned in connection with the massacre.

Authorities believe Rezgui trained at the same jihadi camp as two gunmen who killed 21 tourists at the Bardo museum in Tunis in March. They fear a third sleeper cell, formed at the same time, could still be lying in wait.

Britain’s defence secretary, Michael Fallon, vowed those responsible would be tracked down. “We are working with the Tunisian authorities to find out exactly how this outrage last Friday was carried out, how it was planned, who was involved in it,” he told the House of Commons on Thursday.

“Let the house be in absolutely no doubt: the people who perpetrated the murders of our constituents are going to be tracked down, whether they are in Libya, in Syria or anywhere else,” he said.

Fallon has also confirmed to MPs that the government favours expanding the campaign of air attacks against Isis, which has claimed Rezgui was acting on its behalf. Labour has hinted it would support a plan to begin strikes in Syria.

Russell Brand, the comedian and activist, denounced Friday’s minute’s silence as “bullshit” as he pinned the blame for the attacks on British foreign policy.

“There’s no point in having a minute’s silence as long as during that time they continue to sell arms, they continue to bomb foreign countries. They have no interest in a solution,” said Brand in the latest episode of his YouTube current affairs show, the Trews. “Their only interest is to perpetuate the problem and to continue to profit from it.”

But Sir Peter Fahy, chief constable of Greater Manchester police and national policing lead on the counter-extremism strategy Prevent, said the minute’s silence should help bridge gaps between communities.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme he said: “As part of the minute’s silence today we will be standing together with different communities in places like Manchester to say we are all going to stand together against this kind of hatred and this sort of medieval fascism that Isil promotes.”

He added: “The important thing is how we approach this and that we don’t end up with a narrative which is a sort of them and us between the rest of the community and the Muslim community. And, we recognise that lots of Muslim parents are battling with this issue, as we all are, in terms of how young people deal with extreme issues on the internet.”

The Metropolitan police said 76 family liaison officers across the country were supporting the survivors and the families of those killed. Hundreds of counter-terrorism officers were helping the international response to the attack.

Specialist advisers have also been sent to help the Foreign Office and Tunisian authorities double-check security at other tourist resorts and attractions.


BiBiC: Tunisia attack: Minute's silence to be held for victims

3 July 2015

A minute's silence will be held across the UK at midday to remember the 38 people - including 30 Britons - killed in the Tunisia beach attack a week ago.

Flags will be flown at half-mast over Whitehall and Buckingham Palace, while play at Wimbledon will be delayed.

The Queen and Prime Minister David Cameron will join the silence.

The first inquests into the deaths of the Britons will begin later, with the bodies of more of the dead expected to arrive back at RAF Brize Norton.

The foreign secretary has said all 30 British people killed have been identified. Philip Hammond said he was confident the figure was the final British death toll from the beach shootings in Sousse last Friday.

The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh will join staff in marking the silence at the University of Strathclyde during an official visit to open a new technology and innovation centre, while Mr Cameron will be in his Witney constituency in Oxfordshire.

A number of mosques are expected to participate in the silence, and many will also remember the victims during Friday prayers.

Police officers across the country will take part, the National Police Chiefs Council said.

And a special ceremony will also be held at the scene of the killings in Sousse, where dignitaries and tourists are expected to attend.

At Wimbledon, matches on the outdoor courts usually start at 11:30 BST but will begin at 12:15 to allow spectators and participants to take part in the silence.

What we know about the British victims

Bodies returned

Later, the first inquests will open at West London Coroner's Court. Coroner Chinyere Inyama is expected to open and adjourn the hearings.

Further inquests are due to be opened at the court on Saturday and Sunday.

Post-mortem examinations will be carried out before the bodies are released to their families.

The bodies of 17 of the British victims have now been returned to the UK.

The repatriation of the dead is likely to take several days, with two further flights planned for Friday and Saturday.

The Foreign Office has now confirmed the deaths of Angie and Ray Fisher, aged 69 and 75 respectively, who were from Leicester and had been missing.

Thomson and First Choice has said all 30 British people killed were its customers.

"The whole company would like to extend our deepest sympathies to the family and friends of those involved in this tragic event," it added.

"Our main focus now is to ensure the families of the deceased and our customers who have been injured receive all possible support at this incredibly difficult time."

Other victims killed in the attack include three Irish citizens, two Germans, one Belgian, one Portuguese and one Russian national.

BBC correspondent Ben Brown, who is in Sousse, spoke to one Tunisian man who witnessed the attack and helped tourists to safety.

He said he feared for his life but when he realised the gunman was not interested in shooting Tunisians he linked arms with other local people to try to form a human barrier along the beach.

"You could only see one colour," he said. "Everywhere was red."

"I feel I could have done more. I tried my best... He is not Tunisian. We are not like that."

He also pleaded with tourists not to abandon Tunisa. "Please keep coming. Don't let him win," he said.

Background and analysis

What we know so far

Special report on the Tunisia attack

Who was the gunman?

Why was Tunisia targeted?

How do terrorist attacks affect tourism

Tributes have been paid to victims in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland

What can UK police do?

'Tragic event'

Tunisian authorities have identified 28-year-old student Seifeddine Rezgui as the gunman who carried out the attack.

They are also holding eight suspects in custody on suspicion of being directly linked to the attack, which jihadist group Islamic State (IS) has claimed. Four others who were held have been released.

On Thursday, Defence Secretary Michael Fallon set out the case for air strikes on IS targets in Syria in Parliament.

He has suggested the Tunisia attack may have been planned by IS in Syria.

Meanwhile, the Metropolitan Police has said more than 160 officers were interviewing witnesses to the attack who had returned to the UK.

A total of 20 officers have been sent to Tunisia by the Met's Counter Terrorism Command, which is leading the coroner's investigation.

The National Policing Counter Terrorism Headquarters has also sent specialist security advisers to Tunisia, to support a review of security at resorts and tourist attractions.

Scotland Yard has previously said its investigation into the attack is likely to be one of the largest counter-terrorism deployments since the London 7/7 bombings in 2005, which killed 52.



37 = P12 = P( 4+4+4 ) & P( 3x2x2 ) > 444 & 322

37 = Star or David = Zion

All those bowed heads, thinking they're memorialising one event, when in fact ...

From the "Father of Modern Zionism", Theodor Herzl died on 3 July 1904 to the 3 July 2015 is:

= 111 years

= 37 + 37 + 37 years >

Zion Zion Zion

= P12 + P12 + P12 years

= P( 4+4+4 ) + P( 4+4+4 ) + P( 4+4+4 ) years >

444 444 444


Last edited by markgobell; 03-07-2015 at 10:25 AM.
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