THE THOUGHTS of people across the borough have this week been with those across the channel following the terrorist attacks in Paris.
Many joined the rest of Europe on Monday in a minute’s silence to remember those who lost their lives during the atrocities on the streets of the French capital three days earlier.
But while the world has united in grief and condemnation, a defiant message has been sent to the terrorists that they will not win.
Meriden MP Caroline Spelman told The Observer: “The people of Paris, as well as the victims of other recent acts of terrorism, have shown great courage and resilience in the face of such violent actions against their culture, values and communities.
“Having worked and lived in Paris for over five years, watching events unfold was heart-breaking. I ask that we all lift them in our thoughts and in our prayers.
“In light of these attacks it is important that we all remain vigilant and remember that if we are to defeat terrorism, faith communities, Governments and wider society must work in unison; one voice, one humanity. We must stand together in solidarity.”
Solihull MP Julian Knight said Friday’s events were a a barbaric attack on innocent people in the heart of one of Europe’s greatest cities, and that his thoughts and prayers were with the people caught up in this atrocity.
He added: “Solihull is twinned with a French town of Cholet, and it is moments like this which remind us of the depth and value of the relationship between our nations.
“There can be no hiding place for terrorists, and I welcome the extra resources that have been announced for our security services. We must defeat this evil.”
Those with friends in France have also offered their support.
Solihull is twinned with the French town of Cholet in the Loire valley and the German town of Main-Taunus-Kreis.
Heather Clarke, chair of the Solihull Twinning Association, said she and fellow members were totally shocked by recent events in Paris.
She added: “Our thoughts and prayers are very much with our French friends at this extremely worrying time.”
The attacks by the Islamic extremists have met with condemnation by law-abiding Muslims.
Mr Mohammed Ayub, general secretary of the Solihull Muslim Community Association, said the Muslim community was, like every other group of people, digusted and devastated by the atrocities in Paris.
“This is a terrible event that defies words and once again puts the Muslim community in the news for the wrong reasons.
“The truth of the Muslim religeion could not be further from these atrocities which are actions by a tiny minority of people.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the paris terrorist attacks, their loved ones and teh victims of terror all around the world.”