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World

Reporters In Paris Recall Deadly Attacks Across The City

KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

We are following what's been a terrifying night of violence in Paris. And it's not clear whether it's over. French media reports that at least 60 people have been killed. France's president has declared a state of emergency and says he is closing the country's borders. There have been multiple attacks in different areas of the city, at least one explosion outside a stadium where a soccer match was going on. And there have been several shootings as well. Andrew Smith was in his apartment with his family when he says he heard chaos erupt at a theater nearby.

ANDREW SMITH: We had the window open, and we heard smashing noises and gunfire - sounded like glass being smashed.

MCEVERS: Smith says he's still hearing gunfire and also seeing emergency responders carrying victims.

SMITH: There are people on stretchers going by, and also the walking wounded have been coming up as well.

MCEVERS: And now we're going to talk to Samuel Petrequin. He's a reporter with the Associated Press who is at the stadium where that explosion happened outside. And Samuel, tell us what you heard or saw.

SAMUEL PETREQUIN: Yeah, I just finished a little chat with people from emergency services. And they told me there were - actually were at least two explosions - two different explosions. One in little, traditional French restaurants opposite the stadium and another in (unintelligible) restaurant. So it's very close to the stadium. Trying to confirm that with the police, but the police officials here are quite reluctant to speak to the press at the moment.

MCEVERS: Have they told you anything else - the police?

PETREQUIN: They still don't know. I'm trying to find out how many casualties were the number here, but it's difficult to have a real - an accurate total of the victims. So for the moment, there is a lot of confusion. But people who were at the stadium for the soccer game and who are still waiting for their relatives to come and pick them up - I spoke with a couple of old people who are waiting for their son. All the roads by the stadiums have been blocked, so it's difficult. There are dozens of police vehicles, ambulances. There are also a couple of helicopters hovering in the sky over me a couple of hours before. So yeah, lots of confusion here around the stadium.

MCEVERS: We can hear the sirens in the background. I mean, what are people telling you when you talk to them?

PETREQUIN: So most of the people I talk with are people who were inside the stadium. So they didn't actually witness the explosions. They have just been told during the game that there was something going on. And so I didn't actually meet any direct witness of the explosions.

MCEVERS: And what's it like there now? What are people doing? Are they - you say people are waiting to go home? Is it chaotic, or is it starting to quiet down?

PETREQUIN: No, not really chaotic, just - you know, people look very sad, and they're still amazed by the number of people that are reported dead in Paris tonight - about 60 from what I've heard. And so everybody is thinking about that with a lot of sadness. Yeah, no anger, no chaos - it's a lot of sadness.

MCEVERS: The AP's Samuel Petrequin who is near a stadium where the French and German soccer teams were playing when at least one explosion happened nearby. Thank you so much for doing this.

PETREQUIN: Thank you. Bye-bye. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.