Guillaume Dominguez (in Annecy) / Photo credit: Jean-Luc Boujon 07h40, 09 June 2023

The city of Annecy is waking up in shock after a Syrian refugee brutally attacked six people, including four very young children. The injured were transferred to a hospital in Grenoble and a facility in Geneva, Switzerland. On the playground where the tragedy occurred, life already seems to be returning to normal.

On the shores of Lake Annecy, a Syrian refugee armed with a knife wounded six people on Thursday morning, including four very young children. A huge shock in this very quiet city of 135,000 inhabitants. This Friday morning, calm reigns in the city. Some residents walk their dogs or cycle by on the Pont des Amours. On the surface, nothing here suggests the horror that unfolded on Thursday.

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Candles, soft toys, little words deposited by the Annecy residents

A small, discreet memorial has been created. The Annecy residents leave a few candles, stuffed animals, words, in a corner of this playground. From time to time, a passer-by stops to gather like Guillaume who returns from a party with friends. "It's important because it's still very serious what happens. For someone to come and stab children when he himself is the father of a toddler... I made a small detour to make a minute of silence for the children, even if for the moment, we do not yet know what are the consequences of what happened Thursday morning," he said.

'The worst possible thing'

If life has resumed its course, the emotion is still very marked in the voice of Annecy residents. "A state of shock, of dread. It is a city of children", "attacking innocent people who have never done anything, especially defenseless, it is really the worst possible act", "it is incomprehensible, aberrant, I hope that these children will get by", testify these residents at the microphone of Europe 1.

Sitting on the bench of the playground, Gérard watches over his grandchildren. Three boys attending primary school located a few meters from the scene of the tragedy. At the time of the attack, the youngest was in the park. "We were scared," he says. But Gerard refuses to turn this fear into psychosis. As soon as the park opened, he took these grandchildren to play on the playground, as if to turn the page.