France wary and watched as it marks 1 year since Paris attacks
Less insouciant, more policed — France is a changed place since Islamic State extremists killed 130 people in the country’s deadliest attacks a year ago. Fearing it’s becoming more divided, too, survivors and victims’ families marked Sunday’s anniversary of the violence by pleading for national unity instead.
Tourism is hurting, armed forces roam streets and France is still under a state of emergency that rights groups call abusive and ineffective and which the prime minister now says may be extended yet again.
At midday, hundreds of balloons were released to honor the memories of the victims; at dusk, paper lanterns were released into the Canal Saint Martin, bearing red, white and blue lights representing the French tricolor. Onlookers, including many families with children, lined the canal and surrounding bridges, watching silently as the lanterns drifted.