France holds moment of silence for Nice victims

National mourning in Nice, France continues with commemoration honouring the victims of the truck attack.

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

French President Francois Hollande (R) and French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve (L) take part in a minute of silence at the Hotel de Beauvau in Paris, France, July 18, 2016.

French President Francois Hollande led a nationwide minute of silence at a ceremony in Paris on Monday, on the third day of national mourning to pay tribute to victims of the Nice truck attack.

A minute of silence was also held at the French capital's Place de la Republique, where visitors have been laying flowers and lighting candles.

Thursday's attack, in which delivery man Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel plowed a 19-tonne truck into crowds of revelers, killing 84, has plunged France back into a state of grief, fear, and now political recrimination.

"Today as French citizens we really feel like we've been left alone. Alone. The government promises us things but nothing sticks, nothing sticks, and we'll never be free of this. I think they haven't got the right answer," a Nice resident  Antony Fernandez said.

"What have they done up until now to make us feel safe? And yet what do we expect? Every six months we're going to mourn for more dead? Today in Nice, it was in Paris not too long ago and it'll carry on like that. It needs to be more radical." 

Confidence in the capacity of Hollande's government to combat terrorism has plummeted in the wake of the attack an opinion poll published on Monday suggested.

The poll published in Le Figaro newspaper showed 33 percent of respondents were confident in the current leadership's ability to meet the challenge, down sharply from ratings of 50 percent upwards in the wake of two major attacks last year.

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls (C), President of the Provence Alpes Cote d'Azur (PACA) region Christian Estrosi and Prince Albert II of Monaco stand at the Monument du Centenaire in Nice, France, July 18, 2016.

At the same time, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls was booed by crowds gathered in Nice during the memorial service to honour the victims of the attack.

There were jeers as he and local politicians departed, with several in the crowd shouting: "Resign!"