A heavy police presence remained in Porte de Vincennes as night closed in on Friday (January 9).
Civilians who had been forced to remain inside the cordonned-off area during the deadly siege were finally allowed to leave. A number of pupils from a nearby school were among them.
“It’s going too far”, said local resident Cassandra. “And today, we must not let terror overcome us. Above all, we must continue to be tolerant and not be afraid. But it’s difficult.”
Local Jewish resident Rogier Anghelovici survived the Nazi occupation of Paris during World War II. He lives opposite the scene of the standoff.
“Why do people who have lived in France all their lives, who have grown up here, why do they feel such hatred towards France and the French people?” he asked.
President François Hollande’s call for unity was echoed in the sentiments of the locals, observed James Franey, our correspondent in Paris.
“For all the talk about divisions between France’s communities, residents here say they’ll remain united in the face of terror.”