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Written Statement - Paris Attacks

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Rt Hon Carwyn Jones AM, First Minister of Wales

I know that all Members will want to join me in expressing, on behalf of the people of Wales, our sorrow and revulsion at the atrocities in Paris on Friday night.  We offer our support and solidarity to the French people and we stand shoulder-to-shoulder with them.  The people of Paris have paid a heavy price for exercising the right to live freely.  Freedom is a value we share and a cause we must all defend – everywhere, all of the time.

I have written to the French Ambassador expressing our sorrow and support for the people of France, and I have placed a copy of that letter in the Library.  Flags on Welsh Government buildings are being flown at half mast today as a mark of our respect.

Security and intelligence are, of course, UK Government competences.  On Saturday, however, I participated in the UK Government Security Briefing chaired by the Prime Minister – the so-called “Cobra” committee.  The Welsh Government remains in contact with the UK Government on security briefing.  I would like to place on record our appreciation for the work of the police and the security services who work tirelessly day-in and day-out to protect people across the country.    

The United Kingdom has, of course, itself suffered from terrorism and we know for a fact that a number of other attacks have been foiled at the planning stage.  Arrests have been made in Wales in the past and we know that individuals have travelled from here to Syria.  We cannot be complacent about our own back yard.  People should remain vigilant and should not hesitate to contact the police if they have suspicions or unusual activity to report.

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