White House

Obama honors Paris attack victims before climate change conference

Kevin Corke reports from Paris

 

At another time, it would have been a glorious tour of Paris by night. But for the saddest of destinations.

President Obama landed in Paris just before midnight Sunday and his motorcade took on unexpected route along the Seine. He rode past the Eiffel Tower, the French Assembly building and the Bastille before arriving at the Bataclan.

The American president strode purposefully toward the French concert hall where terrorists wrought so much horror two weeks ago.

Obama, French President Francois Hollande and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo walked side by side to a makeshift memorial. Each added a single rose to the collection of remembrances.

On a cool and clear night, the three bowed their heads for a long moment of silence. Some 130 people died in the deadliest attack on French soil in more than a half-century. The Islamic State group claimed responsibility.

And then Obama was gone, ready to turn his focus to the climate change conference that brought him to France.