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Notre Dame fire: Emmanuel Macron launches fundraiser and vows 'we will rebuild'

Mirror logo Mirror 5 days ago Tiffany Lo

Emmanuel Macron et al. standing next to a man in a suit and tie: French President Emmanuel Macron (C) is accompanied by Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo (3L), French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe (L) French Culture Minister Franck Riester (2L) and Archbishop of Paris Michel Aupetit as he speaks at Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris on April 15, 2019, after a fire engulfed the building. - A fire broke out at the landmark Notre-Dame Cathedral in central Paris, potentially involving renovation works being carried out at the site, the fire service said.Images posted on social media showed flames and huge clouds of smoke billowing above the roof of the gothic cathedral, the most visited historic monument in Europe. (Photo by PHILIPPE WOJAZER / POOL / AFP)PHILIPPE WOJAZER/AFP/Getty Images © AFP/Getty Images French President Emmanuel Macron (C) is accompanied by Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo (3L), French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe (L) French Culture Minister Franck Riester (2L) and Archbishop of Paris Michel Aupetit as he speaks at Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris on April 15, 2019, after a fire engulfed the building. - A fire broke out at the landmark Notre-Dame Cathedral in central Paris, potentially involving renovation works being carried out at the site, the fire service said.Images posted on social media showed flames and huge clouds of smoke billowing above the roof of the gothic cathedral, the most visited historic monument in Europe. (Photo by PHILIPPE WOJAZER / POOL / AFP)PHILIPPE WOJAZER/AFP/Getty Images French President Emmanuel Macron launched an international fundraising campaign as he pledged "we will rebuild" the fire-devastated Notre Dame.

He spoke after two-thirds of the historic cathedral roof were totally destroyed by the blaze.

Its iconic spire also collapsed and priceless stain glass windows exploded in the heat.

a close up of a weapon: The spire collapsed in the blazing fire © ABACA/PA Images The spire collapsed in the blazing fire "Notre-Dame is our history, our literature, part of our psyche, the place of all our great events, our epidemics, our wars, our liberations, the epicentre of our lives," Macron told reporters in front of the still burning Paris landmark.

"Notre-Dame is burning, and I know the sadness, and this tremor felt by so many fellow French people. But tonight, I'd like to speak of hope too," he said, announcing the launch of an fundraising campaign.

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Video: Notre Dame fire: Politicians around the world react to the blaze (Press Association)

"Let's be proud, because we built this cathedral more than 800 years ago, we've built it and, throughout the centuries, let it grow and improved it.

"So I solemnly say tonight: we will rebuild it together," he added.

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The structure of Notre Dame has been saved after a huge fire destroyed parts of the famous cathedral, according to a fire chief in Paris.

The update came after officials earlier warned that firefighters may not be able to stop the huge blaze which tore through the cathedral.

The interior of the Cathedral continues to burn © AFP/Getty Images The interior of the Cathedral continues to burn Speaking outside the cathedral, fire chief Jean-Claude Gallet had told reporters he was "not sure we are capable of stopping the spreading" to Notre Dame's second tower and belfry, but he later said they had been successful in stopping it spreading to the northern belfry of the 850-year-old Gothic building.

Prime Minister Theresa May sent her wishes to the French capital from her walking holiday with her husband in Wales, where she is spending the beginning of parliamentary recess.

a view of a city with smoke coming out of the water: Two-thirds of the cathedral roof have been destroyed © AFP/Getty Images Two-thirds of the cathedral roof have been destroyed "My thoughts are with the people of France tonight and with the emergency services who are fighting the terrible blaze at Notre Dame cathedral," she said.

Meanwhile, US President Donald Trump tweeted some advice for the Paris Fire Brigade, suggesting "flying water tankers" to put out the flames.

The first reports of the blaze emerged shortly before 6pm.

the tower of the city: The cause of fire may have been caused by ongoing renovation works © Julien Mattia/Le Pictorium Agency via ZUMA/REX The cause of fire may have been caused by ongoing renovation works Soon, the flames burst through the roof of the building and quickly brought down the 315-feet (96m) spire.

The blaze moved through the cathedral, ravaging two-thirds of the roof and spreading to one of the two rectangular towers which formed its famous frontage.

Around 400 firefighters battled the inferno and tried to salvage artwork and other priceless pieces stored in the 12th century cathedral.

Officials warned that fire crews might not be able to stop the huge blaze, but the Paris fire chief later confirmed the building's structure had been saved.

a large building in the background: Flames and smoke are seen billowing from the roof of Notre-Dame Cathedral © AFP/Getty Images Flames and smoke are seen billowing from the roof of Notre-Dame Cathedral There have been no deaths reported but one firefighter was injured.

Officials said the fire may be linked to renovation work at one of the world's most famous tourist attractions, French media reported.

The cause of the fire remains unknown but following a preliminary investigation Paris prosecutors have said it is believed to be an accident.

a large building: Notre-dame Cathedral before the fire © Reuters Notre-dame Cathedral before the fire Prosecutors later said they had ruled out arson and do not believe the fire was terror-related but police will conduct an investigation into "involuntary destruction caused by fire".

Notre Dame is one of the city's oldest and most recognisable buildings, and work began on it in 1163.

The original structure was completed nearly 200 years later, in 1345, and its name literally translates to "Our Lady of Paris".

a large building in the background: Views taken from Montparnasse Tower showing the flames and smoke billowing from the roof of Notre-Dame Cathedral © AFP/Getty Images Views taken from Montparnasse Tower showing the flames and smoke billowing from the roof of Notre-Dame Cathedral Some 13 billion now visit the Catholic landmark every year - more than 30,000 every day on average - according to its official website.

It's believed to be the most visited structure in the French capital.

Its renovation works were estimated to cost around 150million euro (£130m).

Gallery: The stunning Notre Dame cathedral in Paris (USA Today)


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