Newspaper headlines: Attack in Nice and Turkey coup attempt

The lorry attack in Nice that killed 84 people during Bastille Day celebrations dominates the front pages, while some refer to unfolding events of the coup attempt in Turkey.

The Times reproduces an image on its front page that features in many of the papers - a covered body next to a baby doll toy.

The paper reports that unlike other French terrorists over the past 18 months, Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel was not on terrorism watchlists.

"He moved to France in 2005 from a village near the Tunisian resort of Sousse where a gunman killed 38 people, mostly British holidaymakers, on a beach a year ago," it continues.

"As France reeled from its third large-scale terrorist attack within 18 months, President Hollande warned that the death toll could rise. He extended France's state of emergency and proclaimed three days of mourning."

As Bryony Gordon writes poignantly in the Telegraph: "Innocents. That's what we talk about every time there is a terrorist attack; every time a murderous maniac destroys others in the name of some god that they pretend to serve.

"We talk about the innocent people who have had their lives ravaged and ruined by evil. That is what terrorism is. It is the killing of innocents.

"There is nothing more innocent than a child. Nothing. That is not to say that the deaths at the Bataclan or in Brussels were any less tragic than those that occurred on Bastille Day; or that the 74 adults who were killed on Thursday night in Nice should be grieved less than the 10 children who found their lives cut short just as the holidays were beginning.

"It is not at all. It is simply to say that the attack in Nice has shown that nothing is sacred any more. Nothing. Men, women, children... to fanatics like Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, we are no more than human bowling pins."

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Tributes were laid on the Promenade des Anglais where the Nice attack took place

The Guardian reports: "France will start three days of mourning today.

"The French president, Francois Hollande, extended for another three months the state of emergency imposed after last November's Paris attacks, and flew to the scene of the outrage."

The i says that while vehicles have been used as weapons by terrorists before - most notably in Israel - the attack represented a possible escalation in jihadist activity in Europe.

The Financial Times says France is a nation traumatised.

"As the immediate panic ended Nice was witness to a new, quieter horror: the sight of the shattered survivors slumped beside the bodies of loved ones with whom they had been walking only minutes earlier," it says.

"It was the third mass-casualty attack against France in 18 months, leaving many shocked and horrified by the particulars but no longer surprised by the larger picture."

The Mail describes how teddies, toys and children's flip-flops were strewn across the famous Promenade des Anglais.

The Sun reports: "The scene of devastation in Nice, the glittering pearl of the French Riviera, left the playground of the rich resembling a Middle Eastern war zone."

Assault on civilised life

The Times believes the attack demonstrates the difficulty of containing the "fanaticism of malcontents".

"To use a lorry as a missile on a crowded thoroughfare during a national celebration is cruelty that almost defies the imagination," it says.

"Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel killed at least 84 people and wounded scores more as he drove fast at a crowd celebrating Bastille Day.

"At least 10 of the dead were children. Among the harrowing published images from the carnage is one of a covered corpse next to a doll: presumably a young girl."

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Image caption The Wembley Stadium arch was lit up in the blue, white and red of the French flag

The Guardian describes it as an atrocity that is an assault on civilised life.

"There is a peculiar horror in the attack in Nice which has killed at least 84 men, women and children," it says. "The weapon, the target and even the place might have been chosen to maximise the damage caused to the web of trust in one another's intentions that sustains civilisation.

"The victims, as so often in these atrocities all around the world, were entirely innocent people, often whole families, caught up in a moment of celebration, one of those times when everyone in the crowd seems united in a common determination to enjoy the moment until the unthinkable violence strikes."

The Telegraph argues that the attack is a reminder that there are much deeper problems facing the West than the UK's decision to leave the EU.

"For all Britain's disagreements with the EU," it says, "ours is a proudly European nation that will always stand in solidarity with its French friends."

Oliver Duff, editor of the i, writes that the grim truth is that little can be done to prevent a repeat of such an atrocity - but people should move on without fear.

Nation on war footing

Guardian columnist Natalie Nougayrede fears that the voices of reason will be drowned out in her country.

"Islamic terrorism has upended politics in France since 2015, and now that is about to get worse," she writes.

"It has put the nation on a war footing, heightened religious and ethnic tensions, and it has fed growing partisan polarisation which the National Front is set to benefit from during next year's presidential election campaign.

"The fallout will be felt across Europe too, bringing a sinister boost to xenophobic narratives conflating immigrants and refugees with the threat of bombs and automatic rifles."

Rafaello Pantucci, director of international studies at the Royal United Services Institute, says in the Times that France must learn from its intelligence failures.

"Since the intelligence failures of 7/7, Britain has invested huge sums in personnel and technology," he says. "France needs to learn the same lesson to ensure that its squabbling agencies focus on the job in hand."

In the Telegraph, former MI6 director of global counter-terrorism operations, Richard Barrett, argues that the best defence against terrorism is to show that it does not work as a way of changing government policy or public perception.

He says: "After Nice, leaders around the world would have promised to 'increase security'. But when a vehicle or kitchen knife can become a terrorist weapon, even mass surveillance, constant and intrusive identity checks and armed police on every corner would still not necessarily stop an attack."

Gunfire in the capital

Image copyright AFP
Image caption Protesters took to the streets during the coup attempt in Turkey

The coup attempt in Turkey, a story that broke late on Friday evening, manages to make it into some of the early editions.

The Times says the Turkish military launched a coup to try to overthrow the hardline government of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, sending in tanks and soldiers to control key parts of the capital Ankara and declaring martial law.

The Financial Times says the Turkish government was battling what Prime Minister Binali Yildirim called an illegal action by military officers, and the Turkish military described as a takeover of the country.

Turkish military stage coup - gunfire in the capital, reports the i.

The Mirror switches its front-page splash from Nice to Turkey, saying that the country "teetered on the brink of civil war".