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tv   Our Man In Cairo  Al Jazeera  April 16, 2019 4:00am-5:02am +03

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only you can stand it because france and was the second most important place to stand it since the early centuries already. completed and was given as a good. king some not. who's also known as louis king the friend there are many churches french catholics around the world and tired of the french by the way my daughter was in the united states in the church of the french. plays a role that i. had a law that you can be compared to only. the law and and the vatican some sense parents had role of being second long all
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of them or companion of the bath. or large part of his to all of the vehicle danny. and. the question of reconstruction a building of this significance and it's going to be quite a process presumably you know it has to draw and so many different types of people from historians to tax but presumably at the vatican will the vatican play a role will the church want to have you know presumably that that will be. some sort of role or expertise for them to offer in this. i think the vatican will offer or some help some expect. probably is that as we all know you know do something that only. the smallest. five years he's never
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seen and we were hoping something maybe he's always them that they're all interpretation and so. he got to church here is there has to be a big debate on the role and it's kind of murky what kind of. what kind of are you be cocky or and back when congress crown all talking about how the. repeal of the ground there will be a debate on how you call it's you got to. live now globally on many issues and it's lead also on a lot of the scaffolding are for you or your ballot you all he's very old will be it's nine scintilla of google. they were earth to keep some kind of
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constant. when something like that. you have reopened the question of that is going to kill all those who could always use them in these last years all or all. the art. yeah absolutely it's absolutely fascinating isn't it that now when it comes to the process of reconstruction it might be very and might be unforeseen challenges and there might be difficulties in establishing a consensus and getting broad agreement on precisely how it should be built and what it is that constitutes a work of art thank you very much must've jolie we will chat later on but i will thank you for now. is live for us in paris as hasher we've had a bit of trouble maintaining your connection i hope that it's a bit better now can you tell us what you've been saying in the past few minutes.
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that's why when i lost my job was actually standing on the front side of the cathedral the sort of most i call make a major where you see the two towers and from there it looked as if a lot of the fire had perhaps died down there was far less smoke than earlier but we've now come round to the all the side on one of the sides behind not because i'm kathy to i can tell you that the flames are continuing to rage around dogs so you can see a moat better and it really gives you a sense of how difficult it must be for the firefighters who are trying to put out that blaze they're using water cannon but when you look at the false scale of this fire you see the small jets of water in what seems to be an enormous assessor of raging flames a very difficult indeed for firefighters to put out this fire but they are trying it certainly a little less than it was before you can only imagine the sort of damage that there
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is inside as well the furniture the sculptures the paintings this is a famous piece of the call and at the moment it is ablaze the french president emanuel mark all of the tweeted a bit earlier that he stood with the nation that he was very profoundly sad to see these images as so many prisons are coming here no doubt he will be talk. firefighters right now trying to keep up morale find out what is happening and get a sense of just how long it will take to put out this fire because that is the real question though the question is how much more damage will be done by this blaze which is rage now for a couple of hours at least and just cause the whole of the roof to collapse will the towers be able to withstand the continuation of the blaze. that's right because reports suggest that actually that the fire has now spread to the rectangular towers so even though it's been brought under control it does appear to be
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spreading in places and the longer the fire goes on for presumably that would need to in the structure and make it even more vulnerable possibly bake it easier for the fire to spread but you know firefighters have been on the scene for an hour or two now trying to bring the blaze under control but very difficult with a building of of this scale and of this size we've been seeing water cannon deployed they've obviously evacuated the area to make it easier for them to access the cathedral itself and as you say natasha a french president is at the scene of the cathedral fire and he is also heading into meetings with paris police so that there will be some very serious questions are asked about how this happened.
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indeed because all we know is a moment is that this fire broke out but we're not exactly sure why we know that there was renovation going on in the cathedral but you know a cathedral like this eight hundred fifty years old renovation has been ongoing for much of it so a life span it takes a lot of work to maintain it it takes a lot of work. to clean it so that there was a motivational going is that connected to the fire we don't know a tool and there is an investigation that has been north and hopefully we will find out what's happened but of course the focus now is really on trying to put that fire out and i think when you look around around me they're all going to simply thousands of people who have stopped on the bridges all around the world to dump cathedral because to give you a sense of where it is this cathedral is on a small island on the river said which runs through the center of paris the the french capital and all along the riverbanks people have stopped and they've been standing there for i was absolutely transfixed not the song it's this symbol of
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power is in flames many people very sad i've seen people crying i've seen people say look it's it's been around familiar thousand years hopefully it will stay around but it's an extraordinary sight and i think that no one here will probably go home around me until that far has got out yes that's right now natasha i am. on the. page of individual great favor he is a good fellow and appears to have some expertise or knowledge about a situation like this and one of the things he's tweeted out he says the first issue is how old church is a built he says heavy timber construction with large open spaces. very very few if any in a church. in very few cases the fire stops so yes
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presumably there would be some sort of fire protection system inside a building like this that we don't know precisely what procedures would be in place . we can certainly see that it has been an enormous struggle an enormous challenge for the emergency services to try and extinguished. yes flames. yes and a huge battle and just to give you a sense of the drama a little bit earlier we were a bit closer at the front of the cathedral the police led us through that particular point where able to get quite close and suddenly we heard an enormous noise part of the roof collapse and we saw flames leaping out of the top of this cloud of bread black smoke came above us and there were burning cinders and ash fooling raining all around us the police started screaming at everyone to get back they started pushing us fall apart because there was a real fear for people's safety the police very worried indeed that these are bits
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of burning cinder and ash that were like engulfing the area around not could perhaps start another fire which of course is something they'd like to avoid and what we've heard so far is that they have been no casualties or have been no deaths but of course we don't know the full picture yet because that the cathedral is still on fire firefighters are still trying to battle the blaze so we won't know exactly the situation until the fire is pushed out because of course they're all simply hundreds of thousands of people who visit this area this cathedral the time it is surrounded by shops is surrounded by restaurants and cafes twelve million visitors a year it is a place which you know where parisians come to stroll so who is around the cathedral when it when it started to burn we don't know exactly the extent of we don't know the extent of that damage the damage not only to the building but was there any want to around and we don't know about those casualties yet there are
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many many questions ahead but of course as i said the focus really now is on trying to prevent any more damage to this. mosque to peace if you like this very famous noted on cathedral. yes that's right and we've just been one i've been seeing some pictures of. the mayor and. it does go on throwing some questions speaking describing this as a terrible fire but also urging people to respect the boundaries in the cordons that have been set up because obviously it's very important for even though it's in central paris and as you say the tasher it's a very busy area it's crucial the emergency services and firefighters have clean and clear access to the building if they are able to to do their jobs properly and to do all they can to actually stop the fire itself obviously
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there is no immediate word on the cause of the blaze there will be an investigation and according to the paris prosecutor's office an inquiry has already started so there will be serious questions to answer as to precisely who was on the site at the time what materials were in use how they were being used we don't know that there's a great deal we don't know yet and the people of paris will be very keen to know the findings of that investigation given that the special the historic significance of this we do know that the cathedral had been undergoing a renovation project worth millions of dollars specifically some six point eight million dollars including work on it speier natascha but that spire has now been destroyed. so where
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does seem as if one of the spires we're always seeing flames certainly clark being up to it so exactly what the extent of the damage is i i can't tell from where i am but dramatic scenes of course and if you can imagine what it means for let's say parisians to see this building it's a building which is such a symbol of paris as much as the eiffel. tower you know it's just not the sort of building that people would have thought would be able to catch fire in such a way that it could be so badly damaged and that's why as you say many people will be asking some very tough questions as to how this could have happened why it could have been prevented and exactly what caused it in the first place again as i said the focus very much on trying to stop the blaze you said the mayor of paris and it i'll go is there at the scene as is the french president the man or my comment or my craw who at this time in fact was supposed to be giving a national televised address to the nation he was preparing for that all day it was
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something that was very much anticipated in france because he was going to be giving his response to the grand debate that has been held in france giving a yellow vest protesters and members other members of the public a chance to air their grievances he was going to come up with some new policies but at the last minute he had to cancel all of this debate and he rushed here to be not saddam he felt that this was a moment to come together with the nation a moment of unity in a moment to really be there and show support for the firefighters who are working so tirelessly to try and stop these flames. all right thank you very much atia we will definitely be speaking some more but i understand that we can now speak to najibullah who lives nearby she joins us via skype from paris so clearly you are not far from the scene of the fire what have you been seeing through the course of the afternoon and into the evening. well i was going back from work and we
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noticed from the bus a lot of people taking selfies and who toes and then we saw a huge amount of smoke in the sky and we were wondering what was going on and someone on the bus told me no to them is on fire i was all shocked we were all shocked and. as we walked we we could feel ashes on our faces everyone was really shocked by these huge moment and it's been there since forever and it's a here to part of paris history also. yes and i can sense in your voice a great sense of well you know clearly feeling a sense of loss as many people in paris probably feeling at the moment watching this magnificent building and the destruction caused to it as a result of this fire and it's fascinating that you just say how you're walking through the streets and you can feel the ash you can feel the ash from the fire on
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your face that really that really. gives us an indication of the strength and the potency of this fire. yeah it was very strong and we could see from far away from plymouth which is really far. all the room on fire and we could see all the building collapsing and nobody would do anything we were wondering what were they. according to the traffic we could easily understand that. by a man could have troubles get into the building because there was a lot of traffic. all that's interesting so i mean yes it's obviously this is a central part of paris you have cafes restaurants shops and businesses and we were hearing from the mayor of pallet paris earlier urging people to leave the area the areas obviously been evacuated but. given the location of the not turned on
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cathedral it would have taken some time for the fire engines to reach the site because of because of the number of people in the area because of the need to evacuate people around and of course the traffic being a key issue. no doubt the traffic is a key factor in determining how quickly the fire engines could get to the scene and maybe that will be we know now that there is going to be an investigation into the cause of all of this and can i ask if you you live nearby can you can you see the cathedral from from where you live. no i can't and fortunately because i they were on the first floor. right and so have you been i mean i don't i'm not quite sure what you're hearing or if you're keeping an eye on what the authorities are saying like official statements on twitter and things like that but do you just plan do you just plan to stay home for the building stay home stay at home for the evening presumably you're not going to be do you think you might. go out to see what's
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happening with this no i don't think i would go out because you know it is really crowded outside and we can really feel the ashes and smell the smoke which is really bad for us and i think i would rather stay home and watch what was going on hoping. that something could be done and when you were in the streets you i think you saying you will walk in with some friends but can you see what we are you seeing i mean went when the fire erupted it was speaking i spoke to one of the eyewitnesses earlier and we've been hearing these descriptions of people watching just you know such compelling images but that watching with a sense of shock and horror and disbelief what was the reaction of the people around you. in fact i was going back getting back from work
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and there was a walk in and everyone who were around it was shocked i could see some some people cry in a lot of tourists we could see we were we could hear different languages and. which it which was notable is that you could hear the same total tone with different languages everyone was shocked the room was wondering what was happening everyone was asking why you are or how the fire to begin in the building gets here or. that so and we know that there will be an investigation into that now and there were renovation works going on and official sources have been speaking and the suggestion is that the fire probably was an accident and it probably was linked to the renovation works but obviously we have to wait and see what emerges from the inquiry itself and you are telling me that
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you were on your way home from work do you when you walk home from work do you pass the not true don cathedral is that on your way yes every night every night. and. it reminds us of berries and how huge this is and. how much it is like a main cathedral in the books in paris history. and do you ever i mean sometimes when you live in a city you people can occasionally take a sites like this for granted and there are more to you know visitors the tourists rather than residents but would you would you often go to the cathedral yourself to visit. no it's really. been there twice. i think when you leave near you can see all you can see the cathedral
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opens really for example for greece christmas or easter you can see the door open. get in there and it's really beautiful but i've been there twice on you've been there twice and tell me what are your thoughts and your impressions on those visits . oh i think it was. they were one of the most. beautiful thing you can see the cathedral was wonderful it was huge big with a real. real rare gothic architecture and i don't know if. the people who will eventually work on the rebuilding of the real be able to i don't know make you to say i don't think so we. think there are is definitely
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that sense of loss this evening is palpable because it's history but it's just incredible intricate detail in the architecture in the statues that are in these are things that are going to be extremely difficult to recreate and when you were passing the cathedral you say you knew you wouldn't visit often yourself you twice visited the cathedral but would you know was it always you know did you always see tourists in the area was it always filled with people who have come from all over the world not just in europe but from from everywhere to to see this case natural. there was always a huge queue with a lot of people. wandering to see the cathedral and every day every. stop. today. and you were saying that outside
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is thick with smoke and ash and. i'm got different screens up and i can see images from from actually different parts. of the cathedral from different vantage points but it really does look as though the air is thick with smoke and presumably it could be like that for some days to come a fire on this scale engulfing a building. in this way presumably the air in the area and where you live it could be quite uncomfortable for some days to come yes yes it's really off polluted and now we could really feel that the air was. was filled with smoke and i think yes it will be difficult. for the next day i think that we should run in. eventually
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to avoid britain and smoke. it was really good to talk to you i do appreciate it you definitely shed a sense of not just your reaction but a sense of how a lot of people in paris and in france will be feeling at these images tonight thank you very much you might speak later on but i'll say thank you for now joining me over the phone is timothy milray who saw the fire on folding timothy can you share can you share with us. what it was that you were seeing earlier on. thank you for having me i was a i was at home and i thought that the fire was really gaining strength so our i knew no mo ma so i i went off so just to see it for myself because i had trouble believing it and so i was pretty far away in the distance but you could always call
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already see that the fire was absolutely huge the the the the roof as it had already collapsed but you can see that the entire the entire building inside the building it's it's all on fire ever everything will be lost. awful. awful yeah and we know that it's not just about the building itself that there was many precious artefacts and invaluable works of art inside that can probably now never been be replaced they will be lost forever and when you were out on the streets did you can you describe for me the reaction of people around you. it was seeing pictures of hundreds of people gathering on bridges this emotions are running very high in paris this evening. i was i was in the i was on the on the moma and everyone was watching it to many persians many tourists but everyone was
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watching in the same direction everyone was wrong with down there is there is like a feeling of shock being everywhere and just everyone was quiet and some people were in tears that it was really really emotional every everyone i really think everyone is coming together in paris every everywhere they can to witness it because it. was probably i couldn't believe it myself but i see it from a much it couldn't look away and nobody could where i was you had hundreds of people watching it was everyone was. really. and those feeling of shock and disbelief. resonating beyond france because that has been international reaction to what is unfolding in paris tonight the u.k. prime minister to resign may saying that her thoughts are with the people of france this evening on the emergency services who off fighting the terrible plays.
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cathedral we have also been hearing from germany as chancellor angela merkel european leaders world leaders all expressing their sympathy with what is happening right now merkel saying that she is deeply sad. and by the events in paris i'm so sorry to see the images of not saddam she says al faw a with our french friends also some reaction from the vatican the vatican expressing incredulity and sadness of the not true don blaze so that is just a flavor of the international reaction to what is happening in paris tonight also the church in in the holy land saying that they are praying for not true dom at thankfully no injuries or deaths as a result of this fire the area was evacuated and timothy i'm just wondering if
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for those people who might be watching who are not familiar with the area and with the geography around the tree down cathedral this is a very busy area with many cafes and restaurants and and tourists it would have taken perhaps some time to clear the area and evacuate it. actually. be emerging from the going amazing because nobody got hurt i don't know exactly how the fire spread but nobody got hurt great the the area around the cathedral where you have the view of the cathedral but it will course quite large but you have all two old buildings that are really nearby maybe like ten fifteen meters away from the cathedral who it is a good fire to spread there that's really that's a great job on the part of the department of parish and really. i'm really sorry that they could not control the fire but at least they were able to get everyone out in time and so you know nobody got hurt and it's already great.
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through the but they couldn't do anything about the cathedral the roof or the computer older with everything but yeah you know the reform movement i've been great because the neighborhood is very busy to mckibben a lot of people and everyone got out ok little crêpe yes and we will saying from the mayor and who was saying that it was important for people to respect the the road blocks and you know and yes in trying to encourage people to stay away from the area and to respect the boundaries that have been put in place by emergency crews and i'm just looking at reports here a spokesman for the paris fire department saying that the next hour and a half is crucial in order to see if the fire at the not true cathedral can be contained so it looks as though we are in
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a very critical period for five fighting crews at the moment and that if they can't contain the fire in the next ninety minutes then this building could potentially be completely destroyed irreparably destroyed. there too. this is really all i knew that was actually hoping that the towers could be could be safe. yeah i really don't know what to tell you you're kind of taking the high surprise i didn't know that those were in danger but yeah i really hope that they're going to be able to to master the fire and to to save what's left of the building because the this is this is a thousand years of history we're losing right now this is a tragedy not just for you you were talking about international support earlier i really think the cathedral represents something not only for for christianity of
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course but for everyone this is this is something that has been there for almost a thousand years and the roof the roof was built over a thousand years ago to i have i have no words i have no words compared to the try to describe the tragedy and the loss but paris is feeling right now. and i could see the people i was speaking to one resident of paris earlier and she lives nearby homes she's she was telling she can't see the cathedral itself that she doesn't is in the area and she passes she passes by the nazis every day on her way to and from what she was out on the streets here on and she was saying that the air is thick with the state with smoke and ash it was actually very uncomfortable. presumably that's going to just from the images that we can see the air is very thick with smoke so that could be quite difficult for people well with or without
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breathing difficulties but it's just you know already the city is so polluted and i don't know if if that's consistent with what you were seeing and feeling in the air when when you when and by. actually actually i was i was seeing it from a distance as i would tell you it was i was in moema so i was on the hill and it's it's quite far so i couldn't tell you about the about the air. but i know that i know some people who are nearby right now and they just don't look at. a smoker not you you can't you come think you're right away from from that and yeah the idiot who did but i don't think the the air or the local area is going to fade pretty for. the law it's not a matter. for timothy mary we might speak later on but for now i will say thank you for sharing your thoughts with yours and how you evening spin appreciate it we
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just want to give you a bit of context to this a bit of background on the cathedral itself as we've been saying it is one of the oldest and most recognizable buildings in paris its name translates to our lady of paris. work began on the cathedral in eleven sixty three and the original structure was completed nearly two hundred two hundred years later in thirteen forty five it is the most visited landmark in paris receiving some thirteen million people every year which is more than thirty thousand people every day so that just gives you a little bit of background on the historical significance of this site but also the sheer crowds that drawn from all over the world not just in france not just in europe but really from everywhere it in some ways this is a global science and it is
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a cathedral that many people will want to visit when they are in paris that will definitely be one of the places that they want to see that they want to take in and they want to experience and now it looks as though a significant part of it has been lost. is live for us from paris natasha a spokesman for the fire department saying that the next ninety minutes a going to be absolutely crucial. and you can imagine where it just standing in front of the cathedral now we've been moved from side to side as police are trying to keep people in safe areas and now seems that starting in front of the to where we are is a safe it's dogs you might not be able to see the facade of it behind me but what we can see all firefighters all around the huge doors of the front of the cathedral actually open and it's quite eerie you can just about see inside the shafts a lot of light from the fire fights as torches as they are obviously making their
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way through the interior but it's full of smoke i mean you can only imagine how difficult it is for them to see whether. some of the fire levels just promote the towers you can see firefighters there making their way through on the side. more firefighters a spraying a water cannon because the flames continue the fight is continuing around the back of the cathedral where the roof collapsed i mean as far as we know the whole of that roof has collapsed in fact we were very close by when one section just fell through when the flames leapt out of the top of the cathedral is extremely dramatic the police also every want to believe why people were just grabbing their bags and running as was good a nash was raining down so very dramatic scene say in paris they started a few hours ago and they continue. and also the french president and manual on the scene you're seeing pitches of him earlier he has canceled
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a planned speech and we also understand he has been having a nice change with the paris police. as the french president a man of war michael as you said he was supposed to be making a televised address this evening it was very much anticipated it was his response to get a vest protesters a grand debate that's an initiative launched several months ago to allow people to have a grievances he was going to be coming up with new policies of course and many people would have been sitting in front of the television screens this evening waiting to see him on all my corn instead what they saw with these images all of moto damn cathedral the symbol of paris a law it's a blaze i mean very shocking indeed for the french president to cancel does address he came down to the cathedral he tweeted shortly before that he felt that this was a very sad moment to me to be here he's been speaking to firefighters i imagine has
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been trying to keep on rolling trying to find out exactly how this fire started because what we understand is that it started near one of the towers that you can see behind me at the front of the cathedral it then spread very quickly through some of the wooden scaffolding and the ruth. of the cathedral because there were renovations underway we don't know it's all whether those renovations were linked to this fire but what seems to have happened is this fire spread very fast indeed the exact cause is there hopefully we'll find out at some point because an investigation has been enormous but so the focus very much on trying to end this blaze and save as much of this historic gothic cathedral as possible and it is by no means that they will be able to do that natasha the deputy interior minister saying that saving not to dom is not. i suppose with that remark that trying to prepare people for the prospect that the cathedral could be completely destroyed.
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but it's hard to tell i mean certainly the front of it is standing because it's behind me and you would imagine that such a stone structure would hopefully with sound a certain amount of this fire damage but it you know i mean all potential specialists is very it's it's very hard to tell i mean certainly a huge proportion of this cathedral has been destroyed and it's not just about the structure when you talk about not to damage the furniture the paintings the sculpture everything in so i did the historic for the curtains you know these are the things which make a damn what eases the reason that people from all over the world visit it is the reason that this cathedral so cherished by parisians it's famous for prisons as the artful towers so the site of inflate in flames is incredible and then of course many people wondering you know how much of it will be able to be recovered will the whole cathedral and dock being destroyed i mean we can just call no at this stage
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what we do know there is everyone's trying the best far far it's as i said we tried their best to save as much of this cathedral as possible and of course that is the absolute priority right now of the reports that the fire had spread to one of not john's rectangular towers and the first responder. happened trying to salvage the yachts and the other objects and precious pieces that are obviously irreplaceable if they are lost that is stored inside the cathedral. those efforts are very much ongoing you know that the deputy mayor of paris speaking earlier said that the cathedral has suffered colossal damage and a cathedral spokesman was saying that the entire wooden interior was burning and was likely to be destroyed so. quite remarkable scenes we've seen here in paris this evening but also. perhaps worth
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mentioning that the fire started i think around seven pm local time in paris and firefighters book called on the scene and it's quite a busy city isn't it as if you've got a great day you've got people but you've got a great deal of traffic and they presumably would have taken a bit of time for emergency crews to to reach the scene and to to begin that was. all that's right because not to dunkirk the joy is built on a small island in the middle of the river sand the river the runs through the halls of power is. you know this is an historic area there are lots of old buildings and narrow streets of course when this fire broke out members of the public rushed to see what was happening there were people absolutely everywhere the still all i have to say at that point police and fire services with trying to get through was extremely chaotic people being pushed in all directions as the police and fire
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vehicles trying to reach the cathedral in order to try and battle the blaze but as you as i was i'll just say it you know remembers the public wanted to come in saying that people were not eating both sides of the rivers and they are they still all you know thick crowds of people standing on the bridges or just watching. the not so darn cathedral aflame you were speaking to an eyewitness before who sounded very moved very saddened and not very much the mood of many people is just not the sort of thing you margin seeing you know not saddam cathedrals been standing for more than eight hundred years you don't expect to see an enormous fire coming out of the top of that you don't expect to hear and see parts of its roof collapse so i think for many people in paris is an extremely sad evening because they do cherish this building so much of these poles of the city's landscape part of its history part of its identity. exactly and for that reason people would expect to be strict procedures and guidelines in place not just for tourists that
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might be accessing the site but for anyone working inside the cathedral we know that this massive renovation project was underway to restore part of the building to strengthen it the expectation is that there would be very strict control and precise procedures for those working inside a building like is because of its historical significance because of its importance in terms of how they work what materials they have with them and how careful they have to be of course accidents can happen as sources suggest that it probably was an accident and it may well have been linked to the renovation work. i mean if it was an accident i mean it's an incredible result an incredible outcome to this accident when you see the damage that's been done. but again we don't we
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don't know you know we still have an investigation ahead of us but it does seem that in some ways that it could have been made to the renovation work that was happening i mean but how like you say such a cathedral sounds such an accident could possibly happen in the cathedral which. the story which is so important and cherished by the nation why there would be stricter controls of what was happening you know it would be an incredibly unusual situation but accidents do happen and if it is an accident in this case then a it's of course terribly unfortunate that it is resulted in such terrible damage the loss of so many items the loss of a great part of the structure and it's not over yet because of course that fire continues and as firefighters continue to work to try stop the fire and save what they can all of notre dud. yes those efforts are ongoing and several hours later we can see that the fire is still blazing that might be less smoke and it might be
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under some control but it's still very much there and firefighters are continuing with that started at seven pm local time she was saying we do not know the cause of this fire yet but we know that an investigation is underway in the paris prosecutor's office saying that that inquiry has already started the french media reports citing police sources have indicated that the fire was started by accident and the tasha president emanuel is on the scene there and this comes at a very interesting time for them he's just conducted this nationwide exercise. people's opinions and hearing out there we even says in consultations in town hall meetings in an effort to try and quell this revolt against his presidency and and now this. well that's right i mean you know
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you need spin quite extraordinary evening from our own mark all who would be deep in preparations in the lease a palace preparing for this ground speech that everybody has been waiting for for a few days it in for all different to me to be talking about little but what will tomorrow marco talk about in his speech what he responds to the findings of the grand debate will see the policies what will he be offering the yellow vest protesters and the general public and will they be enough to save the remainder all for his presidency in terms of him being able to continue with his reforms well of course that is open sets aside right now because what most people are looking at right now is not a matter of course speaking because he's been here but they are looking at pictures all of his five forces continue to battle the blaze they would have been. thing in front of the television sets no doubt waiting for marco but instead these incredibly dramatic images of this famous building and really everyone's attention
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is riveted on what is happening behind me sorry for him and all mark all this will be perhaps an opportunity for him if you want to put it that way to call upon national unity to come together and this need a moment these are great he tweeted about saying it's an incredibly sad moment not just for him but for the nation so i think those will be some of the things on his mind this evening and certainly i think most people in the public will be looking at what's happening with not far down and whether or not it could be saved or rather than right now thinking about him at all mark calls a possible policies later this week yes of course as you say these images are shocking and people are feeling a great sense of loss and sadness certainly some of the eyewitnesses that we've been speaking to are feeling incredibly emotional and just a sense of disbelief that this could happen but then watching the images unfold it it's very difficult people to come to terms with this and to accept what is
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happening because this cathedral is such a fixture in the city it's an icon in european culture. earlier in the tasha we have been hearing international leaders way in. it seems as though you know many world leaders watching what is happening here in paris tonight we've been hearing from the vatican the vatican saying the not to fire has caused shock and sadness saying that it's. it's close to french catholics and they are praying for the firefighters we have heard as well from the german chancellor angela merkel saying that she is deeply saddened by the events unfolding in paris expressing her solidarity. she said and her thoughts she says all with our french friends. and also the u.k. prime minister to resign may expressing very similar sentiment saying that she too
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. expresses her sympathy. with what is happening in paris this evening and so you certainly sense that it's just. you know everyone is watching this very closely keeping an eye on on this fire and it started at seven pm local time but it is still raging natascha we definitely going to continue our conversation about our correspondent there watching this very closely but if you are just joining us we are watching a major operation in the french capital this evening we are seeing firefighters emergency crews trying to extinguish a major delays this icon. this important part of french cultural heritage the historic cathedral of not true dom the blaze started
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seven pm local time and it has spread and it looks like a significant part of the cathedral has been destroyed the french president emanuel is on the scene he is having meetings with french police he has canceled a speech that he was due to give this evening because of what has happened but we have also been. hearing from the spokesman from the fire department saying that the next hour and a half actually the next sixty minutes now are crucial in determining whether the cathedral can be saved and it seems as though some of the official voices that we're hearing from fronts tonight there there is a sense that the cathedral could possibly be either lost or destroyed in a very significant way to the point where rebuilding and reconstruction might be extremely
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challenging if not impossible and you have to think about a building of. this magnificence it reconstruction will not be easy it will involve a great deal of money the renovation project that was already under way you can see some of the scaffolding there the renovation project cost millions of dollars and it's not clear if the funds will be ready available for rebuilding or restoration process on this scale. just looking at some of the reports coming in to us here. and actually we can speak to timothy marais because he watched these events in paris and he joins us on the line now and timothy i assume that you've been watching the pictures and you've been keeping a close eye on what's been happening. yeah absolutely i turned on my t.v.
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at six thirty just because i heard that there was a fire and i discovered the demon city of it. and the problem that we had and so i was for like half an hour and i saw the roof collapsing i saw this bike go up seeing i was really shocked and so i i didn't you know mark and so i went up just to watch it see by myself because i didn't believe it so i saw the i saw the flames from the from the hill and many people here watching tourists but also regions just watching in shock. because it's it's really hard to believe what is happening and we're definitely getting a sense of salt in that there is definitely a palpable feeling of shock and sadness in paris and paris and france tonight but also. this it seems that the international community.
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have been speaking about this everyone is watching this very closely. and timothy i'm not sure if you're across some of the official statements that have been given updates on how the operation to extinguish the blaze is growing but emergency services have said that they are trying to salvage the artwork stored in the cathedral from the fire but at the same time they are not sure when not sure if they will be able to to save the cathedral because the fire has continued to spread. its tragedy to the inside of the cathedral from where i was from where i was standing or could see that the inside of the cathedral was burning and all that there is going he's going to be lost and there is apparently there is
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a fear that it didn't fire might extend to the towers it means to organize it means that. the wonderful art work the statues that are here it's. i don't know i don't know i don't know what to say it's just it's just so hard to see everything go up in smoke like this you. want. to say speaking about the towel there's just some reports here quote seeing a five fights or who is at the scene saying just. speaking to the comment that you are making that efforts are being very much concentrated on preventing the collapse of the northern tower of the cathedral and. firefighters at the scene also saying that they are trying very hard to save the what at the back of the cathedral i mean there is a. history inside the building and precious artifacts that if lost can never be replaced that lost forever. yeah. the building of the
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get good role was. that the beginning of the thirteenth century for the forty century i think it's it's been there for almost a hundred years. i just i just can't tell you the last that it means for for everyone in paris and even for just human history it's it's unbearable the other thing is that i grew up near the kids because i grew up in the on the left bank of paris right not far from it and you go you past near the cathedral every week or every every two or three days and you just watch it and you have this sense of stability and you have the feeling that it shows you continue with your city of here or i don't know your country or i don't know about that but it's it represents
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so much to well to me but i think to other people in paris it's not it's it's not surprising that everyone is in shock it's really when you watch enough of them you had the feeling that it was it was going to be there forever i had to had that feeling i don't know well it's well it had been it has been that eight hundred fifty is so. i'm sure many people would feel the same as yourself and speaking about. the people of paris i'm just wondering have you been speaking to me this evening but have you spoken to any friends and family what do they say about this no i have some i have some friends who are not far from it or just watched and they're saying i don't have friends of friends the ones like compared to washington once they start and stop. i'm kind of between those two i there for an hour watching i just couldn't help myself. and then you have those were just
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you said to watch it's. it's really it's really awful. and i can hear some sirens in the background i'm not sure if that's coming from your location timothy but tom whereabouts are you in paris i'm actually in your moma in the eighty's so i think this siren or no comment from my you know quality is you know not that gave there are you i imagine there are lots of bills in the. near near the fire because they're working hard and trying to save what can be saved. yes well we are looking at it we've got a number of images up here in front of us but essentially we can see that the fire is still blazing and the roof of the cathedral has already collapsed but emergency crews of course trying to salvage as much as they can but it really seems as though they are up against the clock the next sixty minutes all going to be crucial if
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they are going to save all salvage the cathedral they have to do it soon. as soon as possible if i department saying that the next and they are entering a crucial period now and it seems that if they don't extinguish the fire and the next hour or so then the cathedral might be destroyed or a significant part of it might be destroyed beyond repair there was already renovation work taking place at one of asian what. the. that was. costing millions of dollars but of course it's difficult to imagine the kind of rebuilding and reconstruction that will need to take place now to restore the cathedral in some way but there is there is no there is no guarantee that that it can be rebuilt. or indeed what process will now and seeing
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to try and preserve this magnificent historical building. i wanted it for now is the big question is not so much what they're building but what what can still be saved of the original will work that i received it will worry about the rebuilding later. so for now for now the what's left of the original must be saved and we're really hoping that the firefighters we know that they're going to do everything they can of course but we really hope that they're going to manage these selvages. anything thank you thank you very much timothy will it would it would be good to talk to you later but for now thank you do appreciate you taking the time. right well so i was speaking about the historical significance of not true dahmer and it is worth touching on some basic facts because it is one of the oldest and
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most recognizable buildings in paris its name translates to our lady of paris work began on the cathedral in eleven sixty three and the original structure was completed nearly two hundred two hundred years later in thirty and forty five it is the most visited landmark in paris receiving some thirteen million people every year which is more than thirty thousand people every day earlier we spoke to nudge ma who saw the fire unfolding. i was going back getting back from work and i was walking and everyone who were around it was shocked and i could see some some people cry in a lot of tourists we could see you we could hear different languages and. which it which was notable is that you could hear the same total tone with different languages everyone was shocked iran was wondering what was happening and everyone
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was asking why or how did the fire. begin in the building oh i don't think i would go out because you know it is really crowded outside and that we can really feel the ashes and smell the smoke which is really bad press and i think i would rather stay home and watch was going on hope and. that something could be done every night or post from that and. it reminds us of paris and how he huge this cathedral is and. how much it is like the main cathedral in the goods books and in paris history. been there twice and. i think when you leave near you can see all you can see the cathedral
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opens really often for example for greece christmas or easter you can see the door opened and that and people get in there and it's really beautiful but i've been there twice and. that was always a huge queue with a lot of people. wandering to see the cathedral and every day every night hasn't stopped since. today. well that was a clip from niger my who is a resident of paris she lives not far from the not too damn cathedral she passes it on her way to and from work and she was out on the streets a bit earlier describing the air being fake with ash and smoke she said it was quite difficult to breathe but expressing her dismay and her sadness at what we at this fire we can now speak to.
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french journalist and elizabeth mckay she joins us from paris how would you describe reaction in the city to what is happening tonight. oh people are in shock i think. it's malls are. it's really suffer the. same time. all the way we live in the city to you. the way it was perceived for most of us catholics it's also. happening during easter week so the whole use we can. tell and it's it is also all of this is mixed together you know we think of the story first broke and we think about the big picture than we think about. the feature will as big. a sort of bringing in people into the city the words albany is
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it's very difficult to overstate this you could say that this meeting is a kind of nine eleven happy without there but. for him all your good that is a historic monument. such as i've been finding it difficult to find well because the previous attempts we were saying quite the same thing we all know that we have a puzzle related to how do you call it will be the will live. it. yes and i think you know you say you were saying that it's very similar to what we're hearing from one of our earlier guests and i think that's because there are many people who are feeling exactly the same this evening there is a sense of shock there is a sense of sadness and interesting what you say about people feeling as though they had a personal relationship with the cathedral that it was
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a symbol of stability and continuity in times which very uncertain. i don't. if you puberty it's. sort of. pretty short. but we have. this. election. sort of show interview to i think it's great to pull of faith out of charity something. you do. especially the spiritual in some ways and it is the rest of us because it is it's cult of the structure of power. was not destroyed by the nazis paris was not destroyed in the first. i think to start with
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. but. there's the possibility that the end of the world may happen by mistake if i could. it's a very strange. now it's quite philosophical what you're saying that this cathedral was a hundred and fifty years old it has withstood so much that it have been destroyed by war or violence or bloodshed but possibly by something that was an accident i know that needs to still be established but just you know this is what these are the indications as things stand. yes. could i meet tomorrow wolf is a question thank you to the author of people how a whole drive. people all the celebration to say. the good people to be refilled
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i think to be given a. couple days of record of the work involved in the state does when the but. the fact that it's going to be a reproduction of what we have which i think the idea that because you've always thought we don't stop to bother most people is with professional effort which is not something that would make your home go to contemplate so the question really got. pretty close to tampa is that is that i suspect there will be a quick move. to do we have to resort to rebuilding. the world heritage is actually is the united nations for all purposes not all because they're not all but. in total. bears witness to the call to duty to the spirit it really is also just as a result. and ann lisbeth i'm not sure exactly where you are at the moment but some
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of the pictures that we've seen show that there are crowds of bystanders possibly residents a paris terrorists as well all still standing on bridges watching this this operation unfold where about he was a moment. all right we'll show you these idiots i don't like golf you know set up where i am but certainly i can see the live gold calls spoke for it all of these cable stations. you can see that these are both the you know up the firefighters of the spies yes the whole bonehead it's political early to say you don't see slavery but what you see go off like it was but it's a movie of the of a cathedral. there's a sort of rhetoric flying. all this was a special effect. but it didn't go up to all to be a spray beat or a part by the biggest i think this is the part harmony to bridge to go with what this will do to the inside of a cathedral didn't work don't blow all the pressure we. all took from will
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be omitted pieces of furniture all the princes were put on hold but well. that's a little damaged by this with the with the top with those it's not that the because he's moved there to delete the structure it was would the structure it is not without the shanties. yes well there was renovation what's going on it is a very old building presumably that would affect the strength of the structure but you know i'm i'm this is just an observation and i'm not an architect but i don't regard you rather than should both say no the spirits of the building with who there was no question that they were not there but the cathedral it was almost a question of the sort of greek word invention so one of the. the question is not to write the words of those that were probably going to amount of cleaning.
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but. go to preparing the culture shock and it's ok to compete. because the material leaves. a lot heidi comical so that probably explains why the fuck it took took hold so much . of a factor to get you to live which can't go. on like chuckles i spoke to a call from. one of them becomes a doctor i've seen in the big challenges especially that they have the whole effect trickle sort of blunt with a counter and when i was looking at there we can sort of. do so by my reaction was oh my god this is horrible and it's me and you know who will clean up stuff but we
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had candles and all captions in the schools it's a perfectly true that it states. something that alludes to what's called a curved story what people do not realize is that. the first article today with all the things the with the testable which it was it was not just it was it was all paid to the faces were painted it clearly looks painted in the traditional colors of the crew of the characters a couple using the christ to go to the red and blue. well that was entirely pink couldn't polychrome and that was what you looked at the stuff you dislike you could be crazy because the state screwed up and of course christou was very very careful to create stuff without making them straight it was great. but all it was just to to clean the dirt. that was painstakingly by people with equipment but probably would have added to the plague. and i want to ask you about the timing of this
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disaster because it does come at an interesting time for the country we have seen months of. demonstrations on the streets of paris it does you know there have been questions about the country's. national identity perhaps in some ways that have been questions about the way in which the country has been governed about those that have been marginalized it just it feels as though it has come a quite quite a difficult time. well i don't think we had too many questions about the country's identity crisis we had at the time of the burghers of the fact. but we we don't read about the spiritual we. may disagree with them but they are more than before and they have existed in all history so the question of identity that this comes at
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a time of political it's up. to things to do it or it can bring people back together to say this is how we go how we must because it can be destroyed and it could be destroyed it can be destroyed by but you do. know how actually but it can also be destroyed by accident it's not something that's guaranteed all the way to a power trip so we've got to work at it and i don't know which which which fight the whole thing will fall what's interesting is tonight a pretty don't like to make some of the great debate kind of town hall meetings that he's been taking plotted and there were thousands he didn't take gotten all of them in the last three months. but what kind of ripple effect bring to the country but he decided not to make a speech by to find. you the flames. again
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the current novel are a good politician would do it well and you would say that the butler who. worked. for the for all the production i think it would be heard but it will be what you. who are indeed the we have seen interesting times in france over the past few months and there is a sense that there's a lot of divisiveness but it will be fascinating to see the response that emerges from this and whether it does serve as a rallying point and whether or not it brings people together for now i'm elizabeth appreciate you taking the time i just want to turn to international reaction that's been coming in to what has happened. to thank you situation in in paris. the. u.s. president donald trump was the first to twitter saying so horrible to watch the massive
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fire at not true don cathedral perhaps flying water tankers could be used to put it out must act quickly. the u.k. prime minister to resign may also weighing in she tweeted that my thoughts and prayers are with the people of france tonight and with the emergency services who are fighting the terrible blaze at the not freedom cathedral german chancellor angela merkel also speaking out saying that she was deeply saddened and sorry to see the images of fire devastated not saddam cathedral which she described as a symbol of france and our european culture so there is a sense of the international reaction coming in the world leaders and particularly those in europe watching these developments very closely in paris tonight as natasha. joins us live now from paris natasha can you give us an update as to how the operation is going. i'm standing
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just in front of the facade of notre dame cathedral where you can see the two aspies it's very dark so i don't actually know if you can see behind me but there are firefighters in not building you can sort of glimpsing their torches in and out of targets around the spires and the front doors of the cathedral the huge front doors are open and you can see just about see inside of it's a little bit lit by the firefighters it is thick with smoke in fact i'm standing now you can really smell the smoke very heavy in the air and the firefighters have been working very hard since about seven o'clock this evening local time when this fire started they have been trying to put out the flames they are using a water cannon there on trucks with cranes they are inside this cathedral trying to put out this fire which is devastated such a large part of it the whole of the roof section has gone it has collapsed and we know that the next hour also ahead is extremely critical because they're very
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worried that they won't be able to save this cathedral atoll and that would just be simply devastating not just for prisons but for those who who love this sort of architecture around the world this gothic cathedral which is so cherished a symbol of powers. well obviously the emergency crews are doing everything they can to save the cathedral indications are that they might not succeed the french interior ministry official saying that firefighters not might not be able to save not. that is the view from authorities and actually just before that announcement french fire services also saying that they were not sure if the fire could be stopped perhaps trying to prepare people for the prospect that the cathedral might not be salvaged certainly a significant part of it. might be permanently destroyed and that would be quite
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difficult for the people there to accept. unimaginable for anyone who knows paris always visited paris who lives here you know is not a time cathedral is a part of the landscape it's a power for cultural identity it is as familiar for those of us who live in paris as the eiffel tower the idea the notre dame wouldn't exist even though it's been standing for more than eight hundred years is as i said simply unimaginable for so many people and i think that is why so many members of the public have gathered around here they are as close as they can be because of course the emergency services are trying to keep them back for their own safety so many people here know lining the streets there lining the river which runs just next to notre dame cathedral the river sandwich cuts through paris and they are shoulder to shoulder just simply staring transfixed i what they're seeing in front of them which is not true down cathedral the united probably would cost
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a million times without really thinking about it is simply a blaze and possibly might not be able to be saved i mean at this point people are just really hoping that that is not the case in the focus very much on those firefighters who are doing their best you must be absolutely exhausted trying to save not just the structure of the building but anything inside it the paintings the arts works the furniture i mean it's hard to imagine when you look at it when i look inside it really is hard to imagine that anything could be left because it would be damaged by fire by poles that collapsing roof or smoke. yes and firefighters at the scene of been saying that they're concentrating their efforts on preventing the collapse of the northern tower and that also efforts are being directed at saving the artwork at the back of the cathedral bought over three hours later the fire is still raging it has not been extinguished perhaps it's under some control but really it's not clear it's if the fire is still blazing inside then i
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think it's safe to assume that there is work there are precious artifacts that probably have been completely destroyed and. also to tasher this comes there is perhaps a tragic poignancy to this and we're just looking at what i can see images. of people who are watching what's happening dozens of people possibly hundreds of people just behind a cordon some distance away from not true but i suppose on able to leave because they're desperate to see what's happening and whether the cathedral can be saved but there is a tragic poignancy to this coming at the beginning of the holy week coming just before easter. yes indeed and i mean even to be only is coming at any time because it's just simply not the sort of
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thing the people in the city would imagine saying not to turn cathedral oh a lot many people would be wondering how on earth could this have happened and of course we don't know exactly what might have happened there are indications from some sources that perhaps it was an accident that happened whilst the cathedral is being renovated over the roof was being done but there's no confirmation of that yet but people be wondering how on earth could such a national monument catch fire and then and then just suddenly be destroyed in seemingly before their very eyes and i can tell. do that you know we saw all the cathedral from the other side of the city it was around seven o'clock that the the smoke of the fired really just started at that point and we spotted it from where we were at that moment she rushed across the city in a taxi and everywhere in all polls the city between there and here people were stopping their calls their bicycles getting out using their cell phones to take photographs they were simply stunned to what was happening this huge cloud of smoke
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was going on over the city thesis you know just not scenes that people could ever have imagined would have happened because our sources said this is a cathedral that has been standing for hundreds of years it is survived all sorts of things that has survived paris being bombed during the second world war yet here it is a blaze with parts of it collapsed on firefighters now saying they're not sure if they can save it. right it does seem as though authorities are trying to prepare people for the prospect that this building that has. been standing for eight hundred fifty years this twelfth century building. can be saved so we're just looking at images of firefighters there continuing their work with the water cannon but the fire is still raging we know that there was a major renovation project on the way to restore a part of the church. this is a very old building and. presumably there are parts of it that would be
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weak structurally weakened and that would perhaps affect the building's ability to withstand a fire of this proportion we know that there will be an investigation attash of the paris prosecutor's office saying that an inquiry is already under way they want to get to the bottom of this as quickly as possible. yes you can imagine the questions earlier. being all still as to how on earth this could have happened so that's why that inquiry will be launched no doubt investigators will be trying to find clues as to the causes of this fiber right now i mean it's hard to imagine how they're going to do that because this building is simply filled with smoke the fire continues to bourbon and firefighters where we can see them in there but what exactly the visibility must be just
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terrible so be very difficult indeed to find out exactly how it started but there's no doubt that it will be as thorough an investigation as possible because not to john cathedral burning is simply something that that is unimaginable for so many people and they will be questions as to how such a thing could have happened if it was linked to the restoration because that has been the implication by some sources in the fire brigade there then there'll be many questions as to how such an accident could happen with a mole special a safety checks or protection measures in place but right now of course the focus is on just trying to stop this fight because that really is that really is the critical question now can it be stopped can not be saved and that is why people continue to be in the streets shoulder to shoulder watching transfixed riveted on this cathedral hoping that so this will be the end of it hoping that notre dame will remain a symbol in paris even though it will stay we don't know because even if it does
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survive of course renovating or rebuilding it in some ways going to be incredibly difficult and costly is going to be incredibly difficult and expensive i suppose as well natasha we will touch base again very shortly though a short time ago i spoke with him a theme. found out about the fire while he was at home. i turned on my to the six thirty just because i heard that there was a fire and i discovered the immensity of it and and the problem that we had and so i watched for like half an hour and i saw the roof collapsing up by collapsing i was really shocked and so i did and so i went out just to watch it by myself because i didn't believe it so i saw the i saw the flames from the hill and you had many people here watching tourists but also the regions just watching in shock
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. because it's really hard to believe what is happening with. the inside of the cathedral from where i was from where i was standing i could see that the inside of the cathedral was burning and all the sin there is going to be lost and there is apparently there is a fear that the fire might extend to the towers you're going. to be wonderful are words the statues that are here. i don't know i don't know i don't know what to say it is just so hard to see everything go off the smoke how did the building of the cathedral was achieved at the beginning of a live version centuries forty century i think it's been there for almost a hundred years. i just i just tell you to do all that it means for everyone in paris and even. for just human history to it's bearable the
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other thing is that i grew up near that could see the cathedral. in the on the left bank of paris right not far from it and. you pass near the cathedral every week or every every two or three days and you just watch it and you have this sense of stability and you have the feeling that it shows to continue in your city of your i don't know your country or i don't know about that but it. represents so much to well to me but i think to other people in paris you know it's not surprising that everyone is in shock it's really when you watch nelson done you had the feeling that it was it was going to be there forever. and this is the scene now at the historic not true down cathedral in paris a major operation underway to try and extinguish a fire that has been blazing for over three hours now firefighters and emergency
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crews are on the scene they have deployed water cannon fire hoses but it has proven extremely challenging to extinguish a fire of this proportion in a building on this scale we do not know the cause of the fire official sources suggesting that it was probably an accident linked to renovation work that's been going on at the cathedral you can see part of the scaffolding there renovation work that was costing millions of dollars we don't know about the strength of the structure of a building like this but it is a very old building some eight hundred fifty years old and whether that would mean that there was some structural weaknesses there that would possibly impact its ability and its resilience in the face of a fire like this but we have been watching scenes of this fire lighting up the
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night sky in paris some of the eyewitnesses we've been speaking to describe the air being thick with smoke and ash they were saying is difficult to breathe but essentially people have been watching these scenes in paris with sadness shock and disbelief that such an icon and a fixture of french life parisienne life that a building of such historic significance could possibly be completely destroyed and irreparably destroyed because indications from the authorities at this point are that they might not be able to save they're not true don cathedral we heard from the deputy interior ministry earlier saying that it is by no means guaranteed that they will be able to preserve the not saddam could see. drill. french junior interior minister also saying the cause of the devastating fire at the cathedral is not known obviously there has to be an investigation and an inquiry will be carried
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out but also in an announcement from the fire services department saying that a recent announcement saying that the next hour and a half would be crucial and i think we're just approaching the end of that window possibly in about twenty minutes they were saying about an hour and a half ago let's say about an hour ago they they were saying that they were entering the critical period in terms of their ability to try and preserve and salvage some part of the cathedral the roof has collapsed the spire has been destroyed they are trying to save the part of the cathedral. at the back the northern tallis firefighters are working very hard now trying to preserve the northern talent but also it's not just about the structure of the building that there are many invaluable aunts statues stained glass windows
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that will probably have been destroyed in this fire because it's at this point we don't know the extent of damage but it is safe to assume that a fire on this scale will have destroyed much of the contents of the cathedral as well earlier i spoke to. a professor of theology and religious studies at another university he explained to us the deep significance of not to down with n. christianity. it's a devastating e-mail because. there is friend. here old. stand. your peer group. that is second only to wall to back you can. friend was always called the eldest daughter of the church and so this is really
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a fire at the heart of. well there is in the capital standards of continental standards you think you can see for many many centuries where roles and even the math again became where they were. they were friends and various were the center at least until the plane to. a french martyred. galley can all be very particular i can get you cage to catholicism the french culture at least until the end the love you centurion has no credible. one of the year. country lovers years and. either. perry's many events all modern history all brands. or just learning. of the blue and made feel
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fuller celebrates yet in the world to me all of those one hundred forty four hours still evey's explain that each of. the symbolic the loose and much more than a cathedral is shirt and much more than just for catholics. and we spoke to find jonathan and elizabeth who live nearby she says it's difficult to overstate how much the not tradin means to the people of paris. people are in shock i think. it's cool though. it's really something. same time. all the way we live in the city you. wait to see. the most of us catholics it's also something that happened during easter week the who used to weaken. the catholic calendar. to dissolve
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all of this is mixed together you know we think of the first book and we think about moving pictures and we think about. the cathedral as being this. sort of bringing in people into the city forward so then you know. it's very difficult to overstate this you could say that this meeting is a kind of nine eleven happy without death but. two for among you good that is a historic monument. i've been finding it difficult to find well but the previous attempt to we were saying quite the same thing you know that we have a punk overlay touch it with the city and even calling it will be there and it will outlive. the field are it hunky disrelated and it is coming. if you puberty it. sort of.
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sort of pretty shocked. but we have to sort of raise a populism if you're. going to leave your election. sort of show interview to i think this great temple of faith out of charity is something that does appear in if you do lose those of us who were not especially the spiritual in turn away from it with the rest of us. it is it's part of the structure of courage. you know paris was not destroyed by the nazis paris was not the story of a truck pulled or. i think the fire was. born to the day all happening but. there is the possibility what the end of the world may happen but i would take if i could quote. very seriously
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well there has been international reaction to what's been happening in paris this evening we've heard from a number of wild leaders in europe but also from the u.s. president donald trump expressed his horror at what's been happening at the fire that they're having at the notre dumb cathedral is something like few people have witnessed. when we left we had a whole group of your great representatives and when we left the plane it was it was burning at a level that you rarely see a fire burned. it's one of the great treasures of the world. the greatest artists in the world probably if you think about it i would say job it might be. greater than almost any museum in the world and it's burning. very badly looks like it's burning to the ground. well these are the pictures that continue we continue
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to see from paris the flames engulfing the historic not true dom cathedral lighting up the night sky we know that fire crews are battling this blaze it's coming up to about four hours now of trying to extinguish the fire but it has proven extremely challenging to bring it under control the roof of the cathedral has collapsed we know that the firefighters are working hard to save the nor than tower of the cathedral and of course first responders are on the scene to try and a salvage artifacts inside but there are also risks to their safety in this because clearly parts of the building will be extremely unstable and it will be difficult for them to try and bring this situation to a safe conclusion and that it will affect perhaps what they are able to achieve but the announcement from the fire services department
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a little bit earlier on and this was about an hour and a half now saying that that we were entering a crucial period and we are just coming up to the end of that window i think in about ten minutes time. saying that it would prove crucial as to whether or not the cathedral could be saved and presumably the implication there that if the fire was not extinguished quickly that the cathedral could be completely lost but already we can see the fire has torn through significant parts of the cathedral and it's not clear whether this can be replaced there might be there might might well be now a process of reconstruction and rebuilding but that is likely to prove it stream lee challenging and expensive but for now the people of paris are transfixed to their screens there are people also out on the streets not in the immediate vicinity of. cathedral because fire crews had to evacuate the area in
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order to do their jobs in order to facilitate their own access to to try and put the blaze out the area has been evacuated but that has not stopped hundreds of parisians and tourists gathering on bridges in the surrounding area and we've been seeing images of people watching these scenes with shock disbelief their upset tears streaming down their face we've been speaking to eyewitnesses saying that they just they can't believe that such a symbol of strength and continuity and history in this city could be destroyed but at least this is the scene now as water cannon is deployed to try and bring the blaze under some control that has been reaction from the international community from u.s. president trump we were hearing his reaction just a couple of minutes ago but we have also been hearing from the london mayor can expressing his sorrow the british prime minister to resign may expressing her
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sympathy with what is happening and also the german chancellor angela merkel expressing her solidarity with the people of paris saying that this is a very sad event a very sad night for not just for france but for europe as a whole. joins us live now from paris an attacker what's happening where you are. who are far far it's a result continuing to try and block all the plays and days for a dog beyond you so i don't know if you can really see but they are using water cannon on the side several water cabin now mean much more the before because we know that this is a really critical phase with several sources in the fire brigade saying you know unless they manage to put out the fires soon there is a risk that they would be saved. building and we've also. if they are unable to use
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for example a water that could be dropped by helicopters from the air because some people would say we're wildly throwing water from above using a special aircraft when in fact they call do that because that would be too heavy and it would make our the parts of the building collapse further the roof was already collapsed the flames are continuing and it really is a race to try and prevent any further damage and save. this symbol of paris now the french president tomorrow mark always here he was meeting of firefighters trying to keep up morale of course and trying to find out exactly what the situation is more we understand disease returned to the lease a palace for now but is expected to come back here to motor down to address the nation a little bit later it is ironic in a way that of model marco was supposed to be doing just that but for another reason he had a televised address showed you all for eight o'clock local time this evening he was
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supposed to be talking about his response to the yellow vests a protest he was going to offer some new policies but instead he canceled that and he's finding himself instead dressing the nation about the fact the not for down one of the symbols of french culture a symbol of the french identity if you like is a blaze and possibly can't be saved. possibly can't be saved certainly a significant part of it has been destroyed and we're just getting some more announcements natasha french actually one a french firefighting official says that one fireman has been. there is one fireman who has been injured in this blaze and i suppose that's not surprising because though they these individuals are very well trained and they have the right equipment there are enormous risks in undertaking an operation like
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this a fire of this proportion and on this scale so one five one fireman has been seriously injured also a few other announcements the junior french interior minister saying that they are actually more optimistic than a few hours ago that they can save the not true dom so perhaps a sense coming through that certainly part of the building and it is a huge building a very large building that part of it will be saved by not say minister also saying that another three or four hours is required to contain the fire and if the fire is allowed to rage and engulf the building for another three or four hours natascha that means further destruction. yes and i mean i think well walt in a way you want to line is just how unpredictable this whole situation is and just how critical it is as well because you know when we first arrived here that was
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very soon after the fire began around seven o'clock local time here in paris you know the flames would need bring out of the group there was huge you know balloons a few chip plumes of smoke i should say over the city but then it looked as if before i was dying down it looked as if perhaps there's been some response for firefighters but now it seems that that is not the case of this fire simply continues to rage and each moment the paul says it gets harder and harder not only to put it out but to actually save what is left of the structure because in terms of what's inside the cathedral we know there's so much oh has already been lost paintings all took part sculptures furniture you know many of the things which are inside this. the two of the people from all over the world came to see the president a cherished of course by the corner up in flames or are underneath poles that collapsed roof or simply being too damaged by smoke so this is really incredibly a hall breaking scene for many people who care so much about this building and
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wonders just simply unimaginable for so many parisians who are used to seeing more time cathedrals part of the landscape and really hoping to see evening that it continues to stay that way part of the landscape even if god does mean in some way parts of it will need to be rebuilt yes that's right one has such an image of the not true dom cathedral standing tall and proud it's such an important part of the landscape of the city but it does seem that that has been clearly the. part of that has been destroyed it is going to impact the landscape of the city just looking at a few reports that are coming through here the mayor of paris who was speaking earlier asking people to respect the evacuation procedures and to stay away from the area has said that those living close to the cathedral have been evacuated in case of a possible collapse than it was saying earlier natasha that one firefighter has
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been seriously injured there are enormous risks to them in tackling a blaze on this scale we're talking if you just think about the size of the cathedral and its dimensions and we know that hundreds of firefighters have been deployed some are outside some are on the inside i mean there are enormous risks to safety here for both the firefighters and possibly people in the area if any further any more of the building collapses. i mean huge risks to the firefighters i mean you can only imagine it must be quite an ordeal for them as they pick their way through the smoke are inside this building now as you. said the french or the paris man i should say to our new dago talking about people being evacuated from the area was no surprise because you know this is a very old parts of paris is one of the oldest parts the buildings are very close together the streets are very small so any buildings and in no time cathedral would
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need to be evacuated in case of the building in case the cathedral did collapse and in fact earlier there were real scenes of you chaos in a way as police were trying to get people to get back from the building to get away from the building because each time part of the roof collapse there was this huge cloud of smoke and. burning ash kept falling down and people were very wide the police were very worried that that could cause other far as it could cause injuries to people so people being kept at a safe distance emergency vehicles being given all the access that they need to reach this cathedral to continue to work for there during which it's certainly been several hours now and there's no doubt it will continue into the noise one way or another. yes and i'm not sure what you can see in terms of who might be else on the streets but perhaps that will be many people residents to. stay up tonight even if it means staying out to watch how this unfolds.
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absolutely you know out and as it happens as i mentioned before you know mount omar cole was supposed to be addressing the nation about his response to some of the yellow vests protests and the findings from the grand debate initiative he moved to allow people to air their grievances while he was supposed to be addressing the nation mirandize o'clock local time leaving here in paris so many people would have been in front of their television sets waiting to hear what the person that had to say instead they found themselves watching images of notre dame burning and i think people also be transfixed they all standing on both sides of the river send a myth. more time cathedral they are packed on to some of the ancient bridges which is the river they have been taking photos all along and people really don't want to leave because nobody. is going to march thank you very much indeed natasha you have been watching al-jazeera live from london with extended coverage of
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a major operation underway in the french capital as historic not true don cathedral is engulfed with flames there have been no deaths or injuries from this one firefighter one fireman is seriously injured but efforts continue to try and bring the blaze under control after the roof collapsed we were hearing from the fire services department earlier saying that they weren't sure if the cathedral could be saved the officials sounding more optimistic notes now about whether part of it can be salvaged. hello i'm more he'd seen and this is a special use our live from door in the next sixty minutes we'll bring you more of our continuing coverage of the fire at the iconic not should i'm cathedral in paris as far fighters remain on the scene and on the crews mourn the loss of a structure with
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a storied history. getting back from work and there was a walk in and everyone who were around was shocked. some people cry in. a large is still burning in one of the world's most famous landmarks the medieval notre dame cathedral has been burning now for more than four hours while the cathedral spire and roof have collapsed french firefighters have been using water cannon to battle the massive clean blaze at this stage of the cause of the fire is unclear but officials say it may be linked to see when a vacation work that is currently underway there and their great emphasis has been puts on saving the artwork which is inside the building when they witnessed the fire from the streets of paris she describes what she saw unfold.
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well i was going back from work and we noticed from the best lot of people taken cell isn't bhutto's and then we saw huge amounts of smoke in the sky and we were wondering what was going on and someone on the bus told me not to them is on fire i was all shocked we were all shocked and. as we walked we we could feel ashes on our faces everyone was really shocked by this it's a huge moment and it's been there since forever and it's a huge part of paris history also it was very strong and we could see from far away from plymouth which is really we can see all the room on fire and we could see all the building collapsing and nobody would do anything we were wondering what where they were in and according to the traffic we could easily understand that.
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by a man could have troubles get into the building because there was a lot of traffic. well just seriousness hash poplar as the scene as she joins me now live from paris and that's ash of the images that we have been seeing over the last few hours have shocks and horrifies people watching from a right in the world give us a sense if you will of the atmosphere in paris right now it. was you can imagine people all over watching this scene unfold motor down cathedral flames coming out of it with a sense of disbelief it is not something that they would expect to see in the city prisons of course no this building well it's as iconic as the eiffel towers a symbol of france and french identity if you like but we have had it in. last
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a few minutes perhaps a glimpse of hope for the future of this building because it seems we've heard from the deputy interior minister who has said that so he's spoken to firefighters and they are saying that they have managed to contain or control the fire that has diminished in intensity and they are hoping that that means that the building could be saved now that's very important because until just moments ago it was uncertain whether or not not you down could be saved or not some firefighters were saying that it could possibly collapse in fact we know that the area all around notre dame cathedral has been evacuated residents have been told to leave their homes and people are being kept far away just in case the worst should happen but perhaps a glimpse of hope there from the deputy interior minister as i said is saying that it seems that the fire has diminished in intensity well that is a glimmer of hope as you say natasha and certainly the structural integrity was one
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of the concerns when this fire broke out. another concern perhaps was the sheer the sheer volume the wealth of cultural heritage within that building has there been any indication of the extent of the damage has anything managed to be saved in terms of the art works in terms of. the heritage within. well as you say you know the structure of a not a dam is one thing but of course this is a. more than eight hundred years old it is rich in cultural heritage it is full of paintings of furniture tapestries it has amazing stained glass windows which are ancient and cherished and people from all of the world come to see them now as far as we know much of that will have been destroyed i mean either from parts of the
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groove collapsing all from the fire damage directly over from smoke damage because the smoke is very intense and you probably can see behind me but the huge doors on the facade of the cathedral are open and you can just about see inside you can see the lights from the firefighters and the smoke is very thick it's very thick in the air where i'm standing now so it's pretty hard to imagine that much could have been saved we know the firefighters were doing their very best of course it's an incredible task is a huge task because the building is so vast everything would have been so spread out inside of course they are just focusing on making sure that this building doesn't burn down completely. another focus obviously will be ensuring that people are safe this was a devastate still is a devastating fire has there been any words on any injuries or any casualties when the far broken.
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well as far as we know we understand that we think that's a firefighter may have been injured but we're not aware of any other casualties and that i have to say seems quite extraordinary when you look at the extent of the damage when you look at the huge fast areas of the roof that have collapsed to the ground but you know it could be that there are casualties that we don't know about . because perhaps there were people inside people need this building they simply haven't been identified but for the time being we understand that there have been no fatalities linked to this now the focus was also very much to what's happened how was it that this ancient building that is so looked after in so many ways could have suddenly become come ablaze now what we understand from firefighters is it's possible that we're looking at an accident linked to the renovation of some of the
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roof or the cathedral close to one of the towers at the front of if that is a case i mean what a terrible accident the outcome is absolutely devastating as we watch firefighters trying to save this cathedral because even if they managed to save the structure so much of it has been damaged what happens next is again rebuilt does it you know do the will they be able to in some way renovate this building it would take years it would cost millions of euros but you know that's all for the future and as i said we don't know why it happened just some theories from the fire service that perhaps it was not accidents and certainly we did not know yet we understand the paris prosecutor is going to launch an inquiry into this the the priority now for the moment one must assume is to bring the fire under control and save what they can but nonetheless this fire which has captivated audiences around the world really
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struck a chord with many people because. very much a symbol of paris is something that we have come to identify with paris one of the most visited land barks in the world for parisians themselves to see this the reaction must be a horror really when the fire broke out there were so many people who crowded the streets to get a chance to speak to any. what were they telling you natasha. yes absolutely i mean a little earlier we were on the other side of notre dam and people there was simply where they were just looking or not i mean in absolute shock you know there were moments where there was just silence because people were just watching this drama unfold before their eyes these flames coming out of molten cathedral it is unimaginable when you live in paris that this is something you would see you know
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there were people with two news rolling down their face saying that they were absolutely devastated to be watching this beautiful building possibly on the point of collapse you know people were very emotional indeed i mean it really was the sense of you know how could this be this building and they just couldn't simply believe there are is and people were standing shoulder to shoulder all along the riverbanks there's still many people out around me now transfixed not far from this cathedral with their cell phones taking pictures talking to each other you know people who probably would have gone home normally a long time ago but they simply want to stand here and wait to see what happens and i think that probably be the same across the country because many people would be in front of the television set watching the images that we're watching this evening there will continue to bring viewers these images for now thank you very much indeed for bringing us the very latest there we are of course bringing you live pictures of the ongoing efforts to bring that fire under control the fire which has
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ravaged the eight hundred and fifty year olds cathedral notre dame is one of the finest examples of french girl thick architecture let's take a look at the bill to get more detail it was constructed during the the twelfth and thirteenth centuries essentially built a pagan roman city called lateesha the last time the city. suffered major damage was of course during the french revolution no two terrorists make up the building there sixty nine meters high this was the tallest building in paris until the eiffel tower was completed in a scene ac nine and of course it's a phenomenally popular building nearly thirteen million people visit the cathedral every year nonetheless it's a building that has been in dire need of restoration restoration we understand that
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was underway when that fire broke out it's a fire that is lighting up the skyline of paris and has been for the last several hours let's see if we can bring in some more thoughts on this father christopher jamieson is a better sixteen monk the rector or the woman catholic national office for vocation he joins us now from london that you so much father jamison for speaking to us. this evening just we're showing viewers these images of this iconic cathedral open flames can you just give us your initial reaction when you heard this when you when you saw the pictures coming out of paris. well the first reaction was a girl's disbelief when somebody told me they said switch on your computer and have a look at the images which i did but then a great shock because it represents so many things to so many people this great
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beautiful building it's first of all the center for the catholic community of paris and it's the seat of the archbishop of paris so shock for them as a community then it also is a place of sanctuary for all the people of paris and the people of france a place where they go in times of crisis or times of jubilation so for example at the end of the second world war when there was the liberation of paris in one nine hundred forty four general the goal went there for a mass to celebrate the liberation and then of course it's a treasury of great art some of the greatest art in the world's stretching by eight centuries so all those three levels it's a shock. and i think the greatest shock there were probably before the archbishop of paris himself the archbishop over tea who's just been in the job now for about eighteen months and he must be completely stunned and wondering what to do next because he would be expecting to celebrate the great easter ceremonies there
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starting on thursday. and he must wonder what am i going to do now where i'm going to celebrate these great ceremonies of absolute they for many people watching this the what we tend to think of notre dame is a a tourist attraction it's one of the. the iconic sights of paris but it's often easy to forget that this is a functioning church it is a functioning cathedral where you live and. this you know it's a very very lively cathedral too i mean when you go there's the services every day which you will attended then on sundays there's usually an organ concert there's always a priest on duty to offer people counsel and support many people go there just to light a candle and seek sanctuary even if they're not catholics it's a place to go to for uplift and for personal sorrow as well so yeah it's it it let's not forget it isn't just a great tourist sim site it is
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a functioning building for a great community and that community so my first thoughts go up to that community and to the leader of the community archbishop over to there is of course the terrible irony about the east the ceremonies which is that the climax of the east the ceremonies is midnight on the saturday before easter sunday the cathedral is put into total darkness and then the archbishop and the people gather outside on the part of the on the square in front where there is a fire burning and from the fire a single candle is late to the great east the candle very large candle and that single candle is carried into the church into the darkened church and then they sing the light of christ to show christ overcoming the darkness by the power of this single flame and it is surprising how much a single candle from flame can illuminate the interior of a darkened church but what an irony that the great climax of easter is the is the
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fire and it's the fire now that's destroying the church it certainly is and as you say father jamison this this comes at a time a very important time for. for catholics and christians on the whole the easter service is very much a focal point of the calendar this tie in your community must. the in great shock the more meant but surely you will be able to count on on members of the wiser community pulling together one might assume to get help and support in this time what would you do what would you say to people who want to reach out if there's anything they can do to. provide support trying. well i think the first thing is that the church of paris will be wondering you know
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which church can they use for the easter services for the archbishop because the cathedral the word cathedral comes from the word cathedral meaning seat and it is the seat of the archbishop and so the ceremonies there for example include very often but thais ing adults who wish to become catholic that be a fair number of those in fact that the numbers of those have increased in recent years so there's a great logistical problem and i'm sure that the churches of paris and the catholics of paris will be rallying round to to re house all of that which starts with the the great thursday night ceremony of the washing of the feet remembering christ washing his disciples feet at the last supper then the great ceremony of good friday remembering the crucifixion the desolation of crucifixion learn as i said the easter vigil symbolizing the resurrection of christ with the easter candle coming into the darkened church so all of that plus the people who are going to be
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baptized during the ceremonies will all have to be re how's that i should think it's quite a logistical challenge because each local church will already have made arrangements for themselves but i'm sure they will rally around to do that i think looking beyond that. the support of all the catholic community in prayer will matter very greatly to that community in paris because anybody who's been ill and who's had people praying for them will say they can always feel the people praying for them and i think the support in prayer of other people will be seriously asked for and felt by the paris community and i think then obviously there are huge questions around finance but the good news is that people are often very unaware of this since one thousand nine hundred five the french church in the french state of been said. there is a separation of church and state in france goes by the name of
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a layered layer so is ation in that sense and this means that since the revolution the french state has owned all the church buildings so that building actually belongs to the french state not to the catholic church and i think the french state would have been paying for these repairs sometimes the catholic church pays for them but very often it's the state that pays for them so the french state has a great stake in this and they will surely be having to provide a large part of the funding both as a building that they own and as part of what they love to call their patrimony this is part of the french state's patrimony and i think so but beyond that there will also be i'm sure opportunities for funding from other catholic communities both in real terms and in symbolic terms to restore this great building because surely this is not going to be the end of not for them to party we are celebrating the
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resurrection of christ at easter and i think the resurrection of this cathedral into course will come even if it takes many years it's in must be heartening to hear so many people that we were hearing from you know a score also that they are committed to help bring. back for neither father christopher jamieson thank you very much indeed for for sharing your thoughts to share your insights it's a just what this cathedral means to the catholic community thank you very much share we are bringing you continuing to bring you live pictures of the efforts to contain and control the devastating fire which has broken ites at the cathedral in central paris very distressing pictures for many. many people to watch many people who have visited the city you have any kind of connection to
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paris and to the cathedral itself paris on the world of course watching this this structure go diving in flames though in a statement the vatican says it's watching what it calls the symbol of christianity in france and in the world with shock and sadness and says it's praying for the far faces facing that blaze more reaction from around the world german chancellor angela merkel says she is deeply saddened by the events in paris and that her thoughts are with the french people britain's prime minister to resign may has offered her supports to the people or france and london's mayor says he stands in sorrow with paris and of course the u.s. president says not saddam is one of the greatest treasures of the world's strong says that it's not. it's a country's it's parts of world's culture it's one of the greatest treasures of the
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world's according to donald trump. and i've been there and i've seen it and there is no cathedral i think i could say this probably no cathedral in the world like it it's a it's a terrible scene they think it was caused by at this moment they don't know but they think it was caused by renovation and i hope that. there is a renovation you know what's that all about but it's a terrible sight to behold. a terrible sight super holds indeed you are watching al-jazeera we're bringing you live pictures from the french capital where the noted them cathedral in the center of paris has been burning for four hours at least a preliminary investigation is underway of course the paris prosecutor has just recently spoken and has said the fire appears to have been
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started accidentally that's according to the paris prosecutor's office that's based on an early investigation of course the fool investigation into that bullies will of course continue as our efforts to bring that fire under control let's see if we can get some more thoughts on this course night tuesday morning in iowa where thomas. is the assistant professor of medieval history at the grand university french american citizen. mr kerik is you watch these pictures as a franco american give us your reaction how does this feel to see the fire on ford and before your eyes. it's been heartbreaking i have been glued to
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my screen for hours now going in and out as the school in progress is here. i have so many memories of not saddam not not even as a as a historian just as a kid going back to paris it was the one place in the city that i would always go to whether or not i was there with my family or there on my own. it is the heart of the city but metaphorically and literally any kind of walking itinerary takes you by and through it and across the river go passing across the plaza looking up at the towers even if you don't go in. it's a huge blow for the city in a way that. it's just incredible how we're going to deal with this kind of loss. thinking about it as a physical monument to the history of paris and the roof was made of twentieth century timbers stained glass windows in addition to being from the most exquisite example of stained glass in the world we're from the thirteenth century the flying buttresses were out in the fourteenth century renovated in the seventeenth and eighteenth under the fourteenth and fifteenth you have destruction during the
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french revolution that gets repaired after victor hugo repopulate the us and. rebuilds it as this kind of pristine example of his imaginary mill there's a reason why it is the most visited place in paris and the idea that it's not going to be there anymore i know that they declare that they save the towers and i can't even begin to express the joy that i felt when i heard that part was when to be there but yes the idea of creating this place that so important being gone it's just hard to imagine it certainly isn't we've just had a line coming in from the associated press that paris fire chief has said that the structure of not sure damn cathedral has been saved the fire has not spread to the northern belfries so this is another another part of the the cathedral that. has perhaps escaped the worst but give it give us a sense of the the building itself we've heard about the significance from a religious point of view but certainly from from a from
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a french cultural point of view as you say this is the beating hearts of the city but in terms of the cultural. the petrine one the patrimony the cultural heritage itself this is a structure that dates back centuries and it contains artworks that date back centuries as well give us a sense of just how much history there is in that building and how much potentially has been lost. well it's eight hundred fifty year old people built that kind of the point where france is becoming the predominant power of europe i suppose you could argue whether or not the way the claims of by the time it's completed the kingdom of france is one of the predominant powers in europe it is a building in from the height of the french kingdom walking into your struck by your relative size in the universe to this incredible monument to medieval france
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you feel small and not in a bad way but in this kind of moment of stillness and reverence even though the cathedral is always full blown there is always noise it is so vast the kind of echo of space around you you feel very very small and as you walk through and you you feel the centuries around you are not in a kind of oppressive way but in a sense of majesty and wonder standing on a sunny day in most of them watching the light coming through one of the rows windows is to experience the heart of everything that could be good about medieval christianity the idea of kind of light and stillness and being part of something bigger and more magical than yourself and the fact that those windows alone i mean that's something i keep coming back to the idea that those glass windows are gone is really hard to deal with because there is an experience of being in the heart of the look at the watching the light come in and seeing as if for a moment the centuries are rolling away absolutely you were there and that you could turn around and be in the fourteenth century and for those that for those of
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us who have had the pleasure of being in the cathedral these images you're evoking with this many people will be able to relate to them but even those who have not been to paris those of us who have not. been able to visit the cathedral it's still very much in multan popular culture even the gargoyles the top the tires these have been. they brought in support a culture of a much more recent times this in the cartoons for example it has been immortalized in popular culture as an arts. yes absolutely it's kind of the quintessential medieval cathedral in many ways both because of how photogenic paris is but it's also it is such an impressive structure it has become a stand in for what we think about a medieval cathedral looking at the gargoyles the towers the bells ringing the
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stained glass windows the flying buttresses part of the nineteenth century work done on it was true re store it and then kind of imaginatively turn it into this idealized medieval cathedral and it's very much work it is the image we have of what this particular period of the past looks like whether or not we've had the opportunity to be there and the disney's hunchback of notre dame the opening song is all about the cathedral this kind of going through this theoretical fifteenth century paris to the cathedral standing up over everything else and it still i think very much that resonates in contemporary culture even though the buildings are much taller around and we are no longer in the time it still has that kind of potent symbol as i'm. absolutely and certainly one of the. very much and they are these days firefighters are still trying to save what they can of this of this cathedral this beating heart of paris as we've heard people refer to