French President Francois Hollande said on Monday France was at war against cowards, and not in a clash of civilizations, after militant attacks killed at least 129 people in and around Paris last week.
"France is at war," Hollande told parliamentarians. "But we're not engaged in a war of civilizations, because these assassins do not represent any."
It was the first time in more than six years that a French president addressed both houses of parliament, the Senate and the National Assembly, convened in a so-called Congress at Versailles. It is a procedure reserved for constitutional revisions and major presidential speeches.
"Our democracy has triumphed before over adversaries that were much more formidable than these cowards," Hollande told the legislators in the former royal palace.