World leaders, including Muslim and Jewish statesmen, link arms to lead hundreds of thousands through Paris in an unprecedented march to pay tribute to victims of Islamist militant attacks. Mana Rabiee reports.
Under the tightest security, world leaders locked arm in arm on this Paris street for something unprecedented... Dozens of top dignitaries joined hundreds of thousands of people in the French capital to pay tribute to the victims of last week's Paris attacks that killed 17 people. What commentators are calling "France's 9/11". French President Francois Hollande, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Muslim and Jewish statesmen were also there -- moving from the central Place de la Republique -- ahead of a sea of French flags. Here and there, small groups sang the French national anthem. Earlier, hundreds gathered at Place de la Republique for the start of the march ... ... a show of unity in the face of two Islamist militant attacks --- one against a satirical newspaper, the other inside a kosher Jewish supermarket. (SOUNDBITE) (French) DEMONSTRATOR, MR. GUARNIC, SAYING: "Why is this important to me? I experienced anti-Semitism during the occupation. I was alone at 13. They massacred my entire family. A few months ago they've again threatened Jews with death in France where I was born and where I've lived. It's incredible, it's unbelievable what's happening. And people don't care." Some 2,200 police and soldiers patrolled the streets to protect marchers from would-be attackers... Sniper police stationed on rooftops, plain-clothes detectives mingling among the crowd... The march may prove to be the largest seen in Paris in modern times -- its size reflecting the nation's shock over the worst militant Islamist assault on a European city in almost a decade.