Crowds jeer French Prime Minister ahead of minute's silence

Thousands gathered at the sea front in Nice to honour the 84 people killed by a truck last week

Crowds jeer French Prime Minister ahead of minute's silence

People gather at a makeshift memorial to observe a minute of silence | Via: Luca Bruno / AP/Press Association Images

A minute's silence was held across France at midday today (11am Irish time) to remember the victims of the attack in Nice.

All public places feel silent in honour of the 84 people killed by a truck, when it was driven through a crowd at a Bastille Day fireworks display last week.

Ahead of the minute's silence, being held at the seafront where the attack happened, crowds jeered French Prime Minister Manuel Vall who had joined thousands in mourning.

Boos rang out as it emerged that confidence in the capacity of the government to combat terrorism had plummeted to an all time low.

There were several placards also spotted in the crowd calling for French President Francois Hollande to resign.

The country is in its third day of national mourning in the wake of the attack.

Several people are still listed as missing, while 12 more bodies are expected to be identified today. 

In Ireland, a book of condolence was opened in Dublin's Mansion House earlier, and all tricolours on Government buildings are flying at half mast

President Michael D. Higgins attended the Mansion House this morning to add his name to the book, along with his wife Sabina.

Image: Niall Carson / PA Wire/Press Association Images

Speaking to reporters, he hit out at those using religion as a reason to kill: "People are seizing and distorting, and very often using and abusing pieces of sacred text in a way that would be absurd if it didn't have such a violent outcome."

He said there are many reasons for the divisions in society in countries like France at the moment, but none justify murder. 

"In times of insecurity for economic reasons, people may seek to whip up opposition to excepting diversity," he said.

"We must remove these economic reasons, including sustained low income, high youth unemployment, poor housing, poor access to education, feelings of hopelessness, and feelings of alienation."

President Higgins also added that in a time when the world seems divided by violence in France, Turkey and the United States, among others, people need to remember their values and stand up for democracy.

EU foreign ministers have opened a summit in Brussels today, which also be attended by US Secretary of State John Kerry.

The talks are expected to focus on the fight against terrorism in Europe in the wake of the attack in Nice and relations with Turkey after a failed military coup.

Additional reporting by Sean Defoe