Space agencies around the world are expressing their support of Paris following the terror attacks that killed at least 129 people there Friday night. The European Space Agency's headquarters are located in Paris, with one administrative center located 1.7 miles from the Bataclan concert hall in central Paris, where hundreds were held hostage and about 80 were killed. ESA Director General Jan Woerner wrote a blog post Saturday expressing his sadness over the attacks.
ESA has two sites in Paris. ESA HQ "Mario-Nikis," located in the 15th Arrondissement, serves as the main administrative center. ESA HQ Mario Nikis is located 6.7 kilometers (4.2 miles) from Bataclan. ESA HQ "Daumesnil" is home to the Directorate of Launchers. Located in the 12th Arrondissement, ESA HQ Daumesnil's address is just 2.8 kilometers (1.7 miles) from Bataclan and 2.1 kilometers (1.3 miles) from the La Belle Equipe cafe, the site of several shooting deaths.
— Scott Kelly (@StationCDRKelly) November 14, 2015
"Once again, it is the public and civil society that has the task of facing up to this situation and sending the terrorists and those who pull their strings a clear message of solidarity: All struggles for personal advantage are set aside as we stand united in defense of the notion of peaceful coexistence regardless of borders, nationality, religion and culture," Woerner wrote.
ESA astronauts Alexander Gerst, from Germany, and Samantha Cristoforetti, from Italy, the Canadian Space Agency, NASA and the U.K. Space Agency have all tweeted support for Paris while sharing a message of unity and hope.
The key to survival of our fragile human species is peace, respect, and tolerance. pic.twitter.com/YZ7IVWNObZ
— Alexander Gerst (@Astro_Alex) November 14, 2015
French astronaut Thomas Pesquet is currently training for the Proxima mission to the International Space Station. Pesquet will launch to the space station as a member of Expeditions 50 and 51 in November 2016 for a six-month mission.
Three teams of terrorists coordinated a series of attacks across Paris Friday evening, according to the city prosecutor's office. The terrorists detonated explosive vests outside the Stade de France soccer stadium while France and Germany were playing an international friendly match. Other terrorists opened fire at the Bataclan concert hall where Eagles of Death Metal were performing a sold-out show. Another team used assault rifles at restaurants and bars around Rue de Charonne.