Crowds gather as major fire hits Paris' Notre Dame Cathedral
16 April, 2019, 03:38 | Author: Barbara Erickson
The French leader also praised the "courage" and "great professionalism" of firefighters who battled the blaze for approximately four hours. Since then, firefighters in Paris have been working hard to try and put out the flames but it's proved to be a tough process and onlookers around the world have expressed their sadness over seeing the 856-year-old building burn to the ground.
Our Notre-Dame de Paris burning!
The firefighters managed to successfully stop the fire from spreading to Notre Dame's two stone towers out in front, but were unable to save its spire.
Police have said the blaze is thought to be linked to the structure's ongoing $6.8 million renovation project.
President Donald Trump took to Twitter on April. 15 to speak out about the devastating Notre Dame Cathedral fire and gave advice on how to put it out quickly, but Twitter users weren't having it.
French President Emmanuel Macron has promised to rebuild Notre Dame Cathedral and says he is seeking global help to restore the Paris landmark. Media reports indicate that the fire may have been started accidentally during renovation work underway inside the cathedral.
"There are a lot of art works inside ... it's a real tragedy", Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo told reporters at the scene.
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Paris Archbishop Michel Aupetit invited priests across France to ring church bells in a call for prayers for the beloved Paris cathedral. He pledged to rebuild the church and said he would seek worldwide help to do so.
Historian Camille Pascal spoke to French broadcaster BFMTV, saying the fire was destroying "invaluable heritage".
Have you taken a favourite photo of Notre Dame?
The disaster appeared to resonate with the president, who called Notre Dame "one of the great treasures of the world" and declared it to be "beyond countries, that's beyond anything".
Videos posted to social media showed the spire collapse as flamed billowed on both sides of the roof. "We can be only horrified by what we see".
Built in the 12th and 13th centuries, Notre Dame is the most famous of the Gothic cathedrals of the Middle Ages as well as one of the most beloved structures in the world.
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