'The French will not be bullied'

Some members of the French Welfare Organisation gathered at the Sea Point pool today.

FILE: French expats say France will not be pulled down. Picture: Constance Decorde/EWN

CAPE TOWN - A group of French expats living in Cape Town say they refuse to be bullied by terrorists after the worst assault on France's homeland security for decades.

Some members of the French Welfare Organisation gathered at the Sea Point pool today following the devastating terror attack on the satirical weekly magazine _ Charlie Hebdo_ on Wednesday.

Against the backdrop of carefree holiday makers frolicking in the water, forlorn members of the organisation stand in solidarity with the slain Parisians.

A small crowd of expats gathered at the Sea Point pool today, protesting the acts of terror, carried out by Islamist extremists.

In separate attacks this week at least 17 people were killed.

One supporter told Eyewitness News although the attacks shook the country, it has not torn them apart.

"They thought they could pull the French nation down. They proved that through what they did, the opposite happened. The French people stood up, so they didn't win."

A similar silent protest led by French President Francois Holland will be held in Cologne next week.

Tens of thousands flocked to local vigils on Saturday, with 80,000 in Toulouse and 30,000 in the Riviera city of Nice and a similar number in Pau in the southwest as France grappled with more heartbreak as another day of blood and horror ended with more deaths.

The female accomplice of Islamists in Paris attacks has left France for Syria via Turkey.