Bastille Day attack

Singaporean man, SUTD student among those hurt in truck attack in Nice

Above: Emergency personnel evacuating an injured person from the scene of the attack. Left: A body of one of the victims.Below: Mr Chuah, 22, is in hospital in a stable condition, said an SUTD spokesman.
Above: Emergency personnel evacuating an injured person from the scene of the attack.PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY
Above: Emergency personnel evacuating an injured person from the scene of the attack. Left: A body of one of the victims.Below: Mr Chuah, 22, is in hospital in a stable condition, said an SUTD spokesman.
A body of one of the victims.PHOTO: REUTERS
Above: Emergency personnel evacuating an injured person from the scene of the attack. Left: A body of one of the victims.Below: Mr Chuah, 22, is in hospital in a stable condition, said an SUTD spokesman.
Mr Chuah, 22, is in hospital in a stable condition, said an SUTD spokesman.PHOTO: CHUAH TZE LENG/ FACEBOOK

A Singaporean man and a third-year student from the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) were among those injured in the Bastille Day attack in the southern French city of Nice, in which at least 84 people died.

The student, Mr Esmond Chuah, a 22-year-old Malaysian, is in hospital in a stable condition, said an SUTD spokesman.

The Singaporean's injuries are also "not life-threatening", said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA).

No details were available but MFA said it was "in close contact with his family", and the Singapore Embassy in Paris has dispatched an officer to Nice to provide consular assistance to him. MFA is also helping the SUTD student, it said.

Dozens were injured when a truck rammed through crowds celebrating Bastille Day.

Mr Chuah was attending a summer programme with 11 others who are all safe and accounted for, added the school's spokesman. They comprise seven Singaporeans, two permanent residents, and students from Vietnam and Indonesia.

Mr Chuah had been with a group, some from other universities, when the attack occurred. He is in contact with his parents.

The 12 were at the European Innovation Academy on a three-week programme that started on July 3. They were supposed to return to Singapore next week and a decision has not been made if they will return early.

Mr Chuah's father, Mr Chuah Tze Leng, had appealed for more information on his son at around 4pm yesterday in a Facebook post: "Please find my son... who injured himself in the Nice, France attack this morning. Wish to know his condition now."

Around eight hours later, the senior Mr Chuah posted on Facebook that his son managed to call him in the evening.

"He is ok but hospitalised due to a fracture at his back," said the father. "He was hit by the side of the white truck which carried firearm and grenades and luckily that did not explode. 

"Hospital CT scan also showed trauma in his lung and stomach," he added, thanking everyone for their help and support.

Acting Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills) Ong Ye Kung said on Facebook that he was "shocked and dismayed" by the attack. "As part of international exposure, students go overseas for visits, internships and community work. This is an important part of their education and something that we must continue to do," he said, adding that "we must stay vigilant" as terror can strike any time and anywhere. He wished Mr Chuah a swift recovery and safe trip home.

Said SUTD president Thomas Magnanti: "We are in contact with all relevant authorities, including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, embassies and working with the International SOS to provide on-ground support and counselling.

"We are also doing all we can to support and update the students and their parents."

He said the students had been advised to remain in their hostel and pay attention to the instructions of the French authorities.

All Singaporeans in Nice who registered with the MFA are known to be safe, the ministry confirmed yesterday.

Flags were at half-mast at the French Embassy in Cluny Park Road yesterday, and members of the public were able to pen messages in an online condolence book on its website.

French cultural centre Alliance Francaise de Singapour is converting its Bastille Day celebrations into a gathering for French citizens at its premises to remember and mourn the victims. It is scheduled to take place today at 5.30pm.

The MFA urged Singaporeans in France to be vigilant.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 16, 2016, with the headline 'S'porean man, SUTD student among those hurt'. Print Edition | Subscribe