Bono told Dave Fanning on his RTE 2FM radio show this morning that the remaining two shows in Paris have been postponed. "It's up to the French authorities and the city to decide when we can go back," he said. (In a Tweet from the AccorHotels Arena - formerly Bercy Arena - the venue states "Following the Attacks on Paris last night, the AccorHotels Arena is closed to the public. U2 shows scheduled november 14 & 15 are cancelled." It is @U2's understanding that U2 will reschedule the tour dates given Bono's statement to Fanning.)
Bono told Fanning:
Everybody is safe in our party, which is great. We haven’t heard of any of our fans yet down. Thank God for that. Really our first thoughts at this point are with the Eagles fans, the Eagles of Death Metal and this is if you think about it, the majority of victims last night are music fans. This is the first direct hit on music that we’ve had in this so called war-on-terror or whatever it’s called. It’s very upsetting. These are our people. This could be me at a show. You at a show, in that venue. It’s a very recognizable situation for you and for me and the coldblooded aspect of this slaughter is deeply disturbing and that’s what I can’t get out of my head. ... I mean again we didn’t call it off. It was cancelled, honest, and I understand perfectly why. I think music is very important. I think U2 has a role to play and I can’t wait till we get back to Paris and play and that’s what I’m feeling from the messages we’re receiving from music fans is these people will not set our agenda. They will not organize our lives for us. I remember U2 is the first big act back into New York after 9/11. We played Madison Square Garden and the feeling of Madison Square Garden was just unbelievable and the feeling was just this is who we are, you can’t change it. You’re not gonna turn us into haters or you’re not gonna turn us around in the way we go about our lives. That was the feeling of Madison Square Garden back then and I hope that will be the feeling at Bercy when we get back there.
Bono also shared with Fanning about a trip he took with Ali and the Edun team to Mali. While there, they attended the Festival in the Desert in Timbuktu a few years ago:
We were just revelers at this desert festival, but there was tension there – there were rocket launchers at the edge of the festival site – within a few weeks, Mali had been overpowered by these Islamist extremists. They had overturned the library in Timbuktu and these sacred manuscripts. The inn, the small hotel that we were staying was now the head of the Islamic justice. Musicians were having their hands cut off in the same hotel that we slept in and ate in. You just realized they hate music. They hate women. They hate all the things that we love. This is an illness that’s in the world now and we just can’t give into it, and try to be sympathetic to the people who are fallen prey to this illness and of course we should love our enemies and all of that. They are victims too. But, we can’t have them decide how we live.
Fanning asked Bono that as he's met with many world leaders if he's ever met with any Islamic extremists to try to reason and understand them. Bono said, "I have been in rooms with people who have views that I don’t subscribe to but the kind of ones that will slaughter people on YouTube, I haven’t sat with them. No."
Bono told Fanning that U2 and crew were at venue last night as all of the events were unfolding. "In our security, Brian Murphy and all the people, they locked it down pretty quickly and we got our team and our crew out of there safely. Came to the back door of the hotel. Everyone congregated and watched the TV like everybody else in disbelief with what was happening. We’re all safe."
Bono concluded the conversation with Fanning saying, "We wanted our Irish audience to know that we are very excited to be coming home. And WOW are we excited about coming home, especially after this. It’s been a year away, nearly a year away. It’s been an extraordinary year of all kinds of tragedy and ups and downs, and yet this is – and I know there’s people who don’t believe that even a corner of interest in our band – this is it. This is us. This is what we’ve always wanted to be. We can’t wait to take it home."