Foreign Minister expresses 'deep sadness' over devastating Notre-Dame fire

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi expressed deep sadness over the fire that devastated Paris’s historical Notre-Dame Cathedral.

Foreign Office spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal tweeted, “FM has expressed deep sadness about devastating fire at the iconic Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. For centuries, it has been a revered place of worship for Catholics around the world.”

“Hope that resilient people of France will be able to restore it to its glory,” he added.

A fire that spread from the attic of Notre-Dame cathedral on Monday has caused its spire to crash to the ground, and devastated Paris´s historical monument.

International leaders voiced their sorrow and solidarity with the French people. Here are some reactions delivered through statements and tweets.

EU Commission head Jean Claude Juncker

Notre Dame “belongs to the whole of humanity. It has inspired writers, painters, philosophers and visitors who have come from all round the world.” 

EU Council President Donald Tusk

“Notre Dame of Paris is Notre-Dame of the whole of Europe. We are all with Paris today.”  

 Vatican spokesman

“We express our closeness with French Catholics and with the Parisian population. We pray for the firefighters and for all those who are trying their best to tackle this dramatic situation.” 

United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres

“Horrified by the pictures coming from Paris with the fire engulfing Notre-Dame Cathedral — a unique example of world heritage that has stood tall since the 14th century. My thoughts are with the people and government of France.” 

US President Donald Trump

“So horrible to watch the massive fire at Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris. Perhaps flying water tankers could be used to put it out. Must act quickly!”

Iran Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif

 “Saddened that Notre Dame — that iconic monument dedicated to the worship of our one God & that brought all of us closer through Hugo´s literary masterpiece — is partially destroyed after standing through wars & revolution for 800 yrs. Our thoughts are w/ the French & all Catholics.”