Friday, 22 November, 2019

Notre Dame cathedral is burning down - heartbreaking footage

Reuters notre dame fire 2 Image Reuters
Patty Aguilar | 17 April, 2019, 22:13

The spire and much of the roof collapsed. "Tonight firefighters are fighting heroically against the fire to preserve what they can".

"I extend my honest admiration to the emergency services who have risked their lives to try to save this important national monument". They finally gained the upper hand as midnight approached.

Notre Dame Cathedral is one of the most visited landmarks in the world, and the most visited in Paris.

"The fire is now weaker", said Laurent Nunez, French secretary to the interior minister. I literally just visited Notre Dame two days ago. We never thought it could burn.

The fire apparently erupted Monday in the roof of the medieval church, which was undergoing a major restoration.

The cathedral was in "dire need" of restoration, the New York Times reports.

The cause of the blaze was not immediately confirmed. And we will be there, the whole world is and will be with France.

The Paris prosecutor's office said it had launched an inquiry into the fire.

A hole left by the fallen spire was still burning and sparks rained down from the cathedral's vaulted ceilings more than five hours after the fire broke out.

TRT World speaks with art historian Elizabeth Lev.

"My thoughts are with the people of France tonight and with the emergency services who are fighting the bad blaze at Notre-Dame cathedral", tweeted UK Prime Minister Theresa May.

Bitel noted that the cathedral is iconic in the literature, architecture, religion and culture of France. A presidential official said Macron was to go to the scene of the blaze.

Some people bore witness to the inferno by chance on Monday evening, others headed to the scene on goal.

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On Monday, French President Emmanuel Macron also took to Twitter to express the structure's significance to France and pledge that it would be restored.

As a catastrophic inferno tore through a cultural treasure, President Donald Trump assessed the response from 4,000 miles away and offered unsolicited advice for firefighters trying to save Paris' Notre Dame cathedral.

"The destruction of this masterpiece of architecture is a catastrophe for the entire humanity", said Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu. The cause of the fire remains unclear.

On Twitter, Trump suggested using planes to drop water on the flames. "Must act quickly!" he said.

"The temperature in this [fire] might have reached close to 1,700 to 1,900 degrees Fahrenheit (930 to 1,037 degrees Celsius), easily", said Venkatesh Kodur, a professor of civil and environmental engineering at Michigan State University and an expert in structure fires.

President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker issued a statement: "I am minute by minute the fire of which Notre-Dame de Paris is the prey". Construction began in 1160 CE, and took around 100 years to complete, though numerous renovations would be undertaken in the centuries since.

The cathedral was in the midst of renovations, with some sections under scaffolding and bronze statues were removed last week for works.

It would survive the devastation of two world conflicts in the 20th century and famously rang its bells on August 24, 1944, the day of the Liberation of Paris from German occupation at the end of the World War II.

So as it burned on Monday-during Holy Week, which precedes Easter- Parisians gathered on the other side of the Seine, embers blowing onto their heads, praying and crying as they sought fellowship in their shared disbelief.

Jarvis said the Cathedral of Notre Dame is the 0-kilometer mark from which all distances measure throughout France.

"It's a hard time for Paris and a hard time for all Christians", said Mahalia Mercelia.

"It's a landmark", said Leonore.

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