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Notre Dame Cathedral on Fire in Paris – UPDATE


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UPDATE – The flames are dying down, but it’s night time in Paris, and the exact damage will have to wait until daylight to assess. More to come.

Notre Dame de Paris erupted into flames Monday evening.

The 12th century structure, is one of the most recognizable in Paris. Massive flames and billowing plumes of smoke can be seen pouring from the roof. The 750 ton spire has collapsed into the cathedral amid the gasps and cries of onlookers.

“Everything is burning,” Andre Finot, the cathedral’s spokesman said. “”We have to see if the vault, which protects the cathedral, will be touched or not.”

About 13 million people visit the cathedral each year. US Vice-president, Mike Pence, tweeted, “Notre Dame is an iconic symbol of faith to people all over the world – and it is heartbreaking to see a house of God in flames. Our thoughts and prayers are with the firefighters on the scene and all the people of Paris.”

First lady Melania Trump offered prayers for the safety of those fighting the fire, adding, “My heart breaks for the people of Paris after seeing the fire at Notre Dame Cathedral.”

The cathedral construction was completed in 1345, and took nearly 200 years. The spire was a 19th century reproduction of the original, part of Napoleon Bonaparte’s restoration plan.

French President Emmanuel Macron postponed a speech Monday night. A palace spokesperson stated, “Due to the terrible fire ravaging Notre-Dame-de-Paris, the president of the Republic has decided to postpone his speech.”

At this time, speculation is that the fire was linked to a current restoration project.

Sarah Morton

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