|Brodie and Sean Copeland|
Image caption, "Sean and Brodie Copeland, from Texas, have been named as the first victims of the massacre," Facebook, via UK Sun
"The truck had been driven by someone who appeared to have “completely premeditated behaviour” and “was loaded with arms, loaded with grenades”."...
7/14/16, "BASTILLE DAY MASSACRE: At least ten children among 84 slaughtered by truck driver who ploughed through Nice crowd 'like a bowling ball while shouting Allahu Akbar,'" UK Sun,
"At least 84 people have died, including at least 10 children, after a terror attack during Bastille Day celebrations in southern France.
Bouhlel mounted the pavement, mowing down groups at 40mph, before reportedly jumping out of the truck and opening fire as he shouted “Allahu Akbar” – God is greatest.
A further 18 people are thought to be in a critical condition and more than 50 children were taken to hospital after the atrocity at around 10.30pm last night.
Two children died during or after surgery at a nearby hospital. Christian Estrosi, the regional president in Nice, confirmed more than 10 children were among the dead.
|Nice, France, Reuters|
Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said one Brit was among the wounded.
Brave victims tried to stop the attack by clinging to the doors of the lorry before being thrown under the wheels and becoming “jammed”.
After being stopped by armed police, who sprayed more than 40 bullets into the lorry’s windscreen, Bouhlel exchanged fire with officers using a 7.65 pistol, before being shot dead.
It remains unclear whether he was shot inside or outside of the lorry, which was reportedly rented “a few days ago”.
ID documents belonging to a 31-year-old French Tunisian were found in the 25-tonne truck after the attacker was shot dead by police, according to security sources. He has since been named by Nice Matin as Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel.
He is believed to be from Nice and was known to cops for armed theft and violence, but had no direct links to terrorism. Police have not confirmed the attacker’s name yet, but are raiding his house.
A second man is believed to be on the run. Local authorities fear there could be an active cell working on the Côte d'Azur after the truck was spotted on CCTV in the hills outside Nice.
It's thought the hired truck was left there by an accomplice, where it was picked up by Bouhlel. A police source told AFP: "The truck was rented in the last few days in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur."
Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said one British national is known to be injured in the attack. The first victims were today named as American dad and son Sean Copeland, 51 and Brodie, 11.
Sean and Brodie were on a "dream holiday" to the south of France from Texas and were confirmed dead by friends and family online.
Haley Copeland wrote: "By now many of you have heard about the 80 people that have died in Nice, France today from a terrorist attack driving through a parade.
"Two of those 80 people were American and those two people happen to be uncle Sean and 11-year-old cousin Brodie.
"They were on vacation with my two other cousins and aunt celebrating a birthday."
Devastated Hayley added: "This is an extremely difficult time for my family and anyone who knows Sean and Brodie Copeland.
"Losing a loved one is hard no matter the circumstances but losing a loved on in such a tragic and unexpected way is unbearable. Prayers are much appreciated."
Police said a huge arsenal of guns, grenades and "larger weapons" were found in the vehicle alongside the driver, as pro-ISIS groups celebrated the horror massacre.
Dozens of victims, many of whom were children, were seen lying injured on Promenade des Anglais along the city’s famous waterfront.
Around 100 petrified revellers threw themselves in the sea to escape the carnage, while parents threw their children over fences to safety.
Grieving student Polina Serebryannikova, 22, was with her friend Victoria Savchenko. 21, when they saw the lorry careering towards them. Tragic Victoria died instantly after being hit by the zig-zagging truck but Polina survived despite multiple injuries.
Heartbroken relatives refused to leave the bodies of their loved ones today as the city woke up reeling from the tragedy....
One witness said: “The whole area is pedestrianised and the lorry came down the south side.
“It crushed the crowd like a bowling ball. Everything in its path was crushed.”
Another revealed: “The lorry turned towards the crowds and the driver just put his foot down.
“It caused mass panic and a stampede away. It was terrifying.”
Eyewitness Damien Allemend told Nice-Matin: "I saw bodies flying like skittles as it drove along. I just froze... The beach attendants were the first on the scene. They bought water for the wounded and towels they placed over those for whom there was no hope."
Brit Kartik Bhanot, from Essex, witnessed the horror unfold with his dad, sister and mum, who has cancer and says he originally thought it was a drunk driver....
It was the second worst terror attack in French history, behind November’s atrocities in Paris. Anti-terror police last night put the city on lockdown and warned residents to stay indoors as they swooped in.
One eyewitness who works for the Nice authorities said: “It is absolute chaos. Bodies are lying everywhere. Police are flooding the streets, including anti-terrorism officers.
“Nobody knows what to do — except to hide away.”
The European country has been in a state of emergency since the November Paris attacks.
President Francois Hollande today extended the emergency, which was due to end on July 26, by three months, as he pledged to "hit" ISIS in Syria and Iraq "even harder" .
French Prime Minister Manual Valls says the country will observe three days of national mourning from Saturday.
He added: "The goal of terrorists is to instil fear and panic, but France is a great democracy that will not allow itself to be destabilised.""...
[Ed. note: Pal, you already are "destabilised" due to your own actions or lack thereof. Your denial allows the killings to continue.]
(continuing): "Nice’s Mayor Christian Estrosi said the situation was “under control” early today. Mr Estrosi said on TV: “The driver fired on the crowd, according to the police who killed him.”
The truck had been driven by someone who appeared to have “completely premeditated behaviour” and “was loaded with arms, loaded with grenades”.
The mayor said the city’s hospitals were struggling to cope with a constant stream of victims and added: “This is the most terrible attack we have ever experienced in Nice.”
Last night the country’s anti-terrorism investigation department took over the case.
An investigation into "murder, attempted murder in an organised group linked to a terrorist enterprise" is underway.
A Downing Street spokesman said PM Theresa May was being kept up to date with developments in France.
He stressed: “Our thoughts are with those affected by this terrible incident on what was a day of national celebration.”
Theresa May today said: "If this was a terrorist attack we must redouble our efforts to defeat these brutal murderers who want to destroy our way of life."
She added: "Our hearts go out to the French people, and to all those who have lost loved ones or been injured."
New Chancellor Philip Hammond tweeted: "Shocked and saddened by the loss of life in France. My thoughts are with all those affected."
Labour leadership hopeful Owen Smith announced that he would be cancelling Friday's campaign launch "in light of the heartbreaking news from Nice".
London Mayor Sadiq Khan paid tribute on Twitter: "Devastated by this unspeakable attack on #Nice. London is united with you in our grief, and in our determination to defeat terrorism.""