NICE, July 15 - A Tunisian-born man zigzagged a truck through a crowd celebrating Bastille Day in the French city of Nice, killing at least 84 and injuring dozens of children in what President Francois Hollande today called a �terrorist� attack.
One witness said a motorcyclist tried to stop the rampage by drawing level with the truck and attempting to open the door of its cab before he fell and ended up under its wheels.
Two children were confirmed dead and another 50 were being treated in a hospital after the attack that left bodies strewn over the palm-lined Promenade des Anglais in the French Riviera resort.
Some of the dead, covered with sheets, remained on the promenade in the bright sun on Friday.
Two US citizens and a Ukrainian were among those killed, their countries said.
Witnesses said the white truck drove at speed into a crowd over a distance of two kilometres (1.3 miles) when they had been watching a fireworks display on France�s national day. City authorities said that some 30,000 people had watched the display.
Details, meanwhile, began to emerge about the driver, identified as 31-year-old Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel. Neighbours described him as a loner who never responded to their greetings.
Witnesses said he had also fired at police before officers shot him dead.
Hollande declared three days of mourning after the assault, as shellshocked France found itself again mourning its dead after attacks on Charlie Hebdo magazine in January 2015 and the November 2015 massacre in Paris.
�France was struck on its national day... the symbol of freedom,� said Hollande in a sombre televised address in the early hours today. The attack was of an �undeniable terrorist nature�, he said.
Around 50 children were being treated at a paediatric hospital close to the scene of the attack. Some were �hanging between life and death�, a hospital official said.
The State Department said two American citizens were among the dead. A Texas-based newspaper, the Austin American-Statesman, named the victims as 51-year-old Sean Copeland and his 11-year-old son Brodie.
A Ukrainian citizen was also killed, the country�s Foreign Minister said on Twitter, without giving more details.
A German freelance journalist who witnessed the attack said he saw a man on a motorbike chase the truck. �The motorcyclist attempted to overtake the truck and even tried to open the driver�s door, but he fell and ended up under the wheels of the truck,� Richard Gutjahr, 42, told AFP today. � AFP