WASHINGTON -- President Obama vowed justice for the victims of the Boston bomb attacks on Monday but cautioned against the urge to “jump to conclusions” before a full investigation is done.
“We still do not know who did this or why, and people shouldn’t jump to conclusions before we have all the facts,” Obama told reporters. “But make no mistake, we will get to the bottom of this. We will find out who did this, we will find out why they did this. Any responsible individuals, any responsible groups, will feel the full weight of justice.”
The remarks came just over three hours after bomb blasts along the route of the Boston Marathon claimed the lives of at least two people and injured at least two dozen more, some of them seriously.
Early reports from the Boston police suggest that one or more bombs may have been planted in garbage cans in time to go off as runners neared the finish line of the race.
The White House has promised all its resources to the investigation of and response to the explosions. Obama is being briefed by senior officials and has ordered the FBI director and Homeland Security secretary to make all needed resources available to state and local government agencies.
As details continued to emerge, Obama appeared in the White House briefing room to pledge his efforts to find those responsible and bring them to justice.
He declined to take questions about whether the bombs were part of a terrorist plot and did not speculate on who might be behind the attacks.
“I want to reiterate: We will find out who did this,” he said in closing. “And we will hold them accountable.”
Obama noted that today is Patriots’ Day, a state holiday, in Massachusetts. The day “celebrates the free and fiercely independent spirit that this great American city of Boston has reflected from the earliest days of our nation,” the president said.
“Boston is a tough and resilient town; so are its people. I’m supremely confident that Bostonians will pull together, take care of each other and move forward as one proud city,” Obama said. “And as they do, the American people will be with them every single step of the way.”