Trump Says Looser Gun Laws Could Have Prevented Bataclan Attack

(Bloomberg) -- U.S. President Donald Trump said the 2015 terror attack at the Bataclan nightclub in Paris might have been avoided if France had fewer restrictions on gun ownership.

“Paris, France, they say has the strongest gun laws in the world,” Trump said Friday at a National Rifle Association convention in Indianapolis. “If there was one gun being carried by one person on the other side, it very well could have been a whole different result. The shooting went on so long and there wasn’t a thing you could do about it.”

Trump Says Looser Gun Laws Could Have Prevented Bataclan Attack

Trump went on to describe the systematic murder of concert-goers killed during the attack, which left 90 people dead and 200 more wounded.

“The shooting went on so long and there wasn’t a thing you could do about it,” Trump said. “Get over here, boom. Here, boom. And then they left. They were captured later.”

In fact, all three shooters at the concert died on the scene. Two of the attackers died by detonating their suicide vests, while a third was hit by police gunfire, with his vest exploding when he fell. Trump may have been referencing Islamic State-affiliated perpetrators who fled other attacks in the city, or the high-profile search for accomplices after the attack.

Trump went on to say if even a “tiny percentage” of individuals at the concert were armed the attack “probably wouldn’t have happened because the cowards would have known there were people and they’re having guns.”

The U.S. president has previously earned the ire of the French government for attacking French President Emmanuel Macron during the anniversary of the attacks last year. In a string of tweets, Trump mocked France for the German occupation during World War II and criticized European tariffs on U.S. wine products.

Trump’s advice to France drew more criticism recently when he suggested the use of “flying water tankers” as the iconic Notre Dame cathedral was engulfed in flames.

About two hours later, France’s civil security tweeted that “All means are being used, except for water-bombing aircrafts which, if used, could lead to the collapse of the entire structure of the cathedral.”

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.