July 18, 2020

French authorities are launching an investigation into possible arson after the famed St. Peter and St. Paul cathedral in Nantes, France, caught fire Saturday.

Pierre Sennes, the Nantes public prosecutor, said a criminal motive is suspected because the fire had three different starting points throughout the cathedral. "It's not a coincidence," he said. "It's even a signature."

The fire has been contained and does not appear to have inflicted severe, widespread damage, unlike last year's devastating fire at the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris, which was not set deliberately. But the organ was reportedly completely destroyed and the platform on which it rests is "very unstable and risks collapsing."

The construction of St. Peter and St. Paul began in the 15th century, but was not completed until four centuries later. Read more at The Washington Post and BBC. Tim O'Donnell

June 28, 2015

The FBI is investigating fires at black churches in Tennessee, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia, to see if they are connected.

The fires all took place in the days following the shooting at Emanuel AME Church June 17, with three ruled as arson, BuzzFeed News reports. Officials have yet to determine the cause of a fourth fire at Grover Grove Baptist Church in Warrenville, South Carolina. "They're being investigated to determine who is responsible and what motives are behind them," FBI spokesperson Paul Bresson said. "I'm not sure there is any reason to link them together at this point." Catherine Garcia

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