News World Turnbull, Key pay respects

Turnbull, Key pay respects

bataclan paris attacks turnbull
John Key and Malcolm Turnbull at the Bataclan memorial in late 2015, shortly before the G20 summit in Turkey. Photo: Getty.
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Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has paid respects to the 130 victims of the Paris terrorist attacks, laying a wreath with his New Zealand counterpart John Key in the French capital.

Mr Turnbull and his wife, Lucy, joined Mr Key and his wife, Bronagh, to lay flowers at the Bataclan Theatre, where almost 100 concert goers were gunned down on November 13.

The Australian Prime Minister also spoke briefly in French.

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“We are here offering the people of France, the people of Paris, our most heartfelt condolences and our unflinching solidarity in the face of this terrorism,” he told reporters in Paris.

“We are with all people committed to freedom in this battle against terrorism, against violence, against violent extremism.”

Mr Key echoed Mr Turnbull’s sentiment.

“New Zealand and Australia are two countries that are almost the furtherest away from France but at a time of such sadness and heartache for the people of France, we’ve never been closer together,” he said.

Details of the tribute were kept secret amid security concerns following violent clashes on Sunday at Place de la Republique, where riot police fired tear gas at hundreds of protesters defying orders to cancel a planned climate change march.

Some of the activists lobbed bottles and shoes during the demonstration ahead of major UN climate talks in the city.

Mr Turnbull and Mr Key flew into Paris on Sunday evening from the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Malta.

Mr Turnbull will line up alongside around 140 world leaders to outline their positions on curbing global emissions on the first day of the climate change conference on Monday.

He will attend a formal lunch hosted by President Francois Hollande and hold several bilateral meetings on the summit’s sidelines before flying out on Monday evening.

Australia has not changed its 2030 target to cut emissions by 26 to 28 per cent on 2005 levels under Mr Turnbull’s leadership, but will push for five yearly reviews to force countries to take stock of efforts.

It’s hoped 196 parties will sign onto a historic deal in Paris to curb emissions and limit global warming to at least two degrees.

Environment Minister Greg Hunt believes the terrorist attacks will boost the determination of negotiators to reach a deal, saying it would be a dereliction of duty if the talks failed.

“I have a sense that it would be disrespecting Paris,” he told AAP earlier this month.

“There’s a weight of obligation there.”

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten will also be in Paris for the climate talks and will pay his own tribute to the victims of the deadly attacks.

The opposition recently revealed it would aim to slash emissions by 45 per cent on 2005 levels by 2030 and aim for net zero carbon pollution by 2050.

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