President Barack Obama on Wednesday condemned what he called the “cowardly, evil” attack against a satirical newspaper in Paris and offered U.S. assistance to the French government.
“We will stand with the people of France, through this very, very difficult time,” Obama told reporters in the Oval Office during an appearance with Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State John Kerry.
Obama said he has reached out to French President Francois Hollande and expected to talk to him soon about attack that killed a dozen people.
“The fact that this was an attack on journalists, an attack on our free press, also underscores the degree to which these terrorists fear freedom of speech and freedom of the press,” he said.
Obama said U.S. counterterrorism cooperation with France is excellent and “we will provide them with every bit of assistance that we can going forward.”
He said these types of attacks can happen anywhere in the world and that he would stress to Kerry the need for Americans abroad to remain vigilant.
He also cited a need to hunt down and “bring the perpetrators of this specific act to justice and to roll up the networks that helped advance these kinds of plots.”