Continuing climate talks 'best response to terrorism'

French President Francois Hollande (Reuters)
French President Francois Hollande (Reuters)

Going ahead with the UN climate talks in Paris is the "best response" to the terror attacks that killed 130 people in the French capital, French President Francois Hollande says.

In a speech to the French community during a visit to Washington, Hollande on Tuesday (local time) hailed the climate conference as "the most important event of recent years."

The decision to hold the climate summit, from November 30 to December 11, is "our best response to the terrorist attacks" claimed by the Islamic State group," he added.

"No one has asked us to suspend, delay it because in fact it is the most beautiful symbol we can imagine after the tragedy in Paris and Saint Denis."

Some 140 to 150 heads of state or government are due to attend.

Hollande spoke before several hundred French people at the French embassy for about 20 minutes.

Flowers still lay in front of the embassy in remembrance of the victims of the attacks.

Condemning the assaults as an attack on the French way of life, Hollande urged expatriates to "continue to live."

"Living well, eating well... Our joie de vivre, our human qualities, our way of welcoming others, celebrating, culture – all of this was hailed by our friends around the world, and we must keep shining in this way."

After his speech, hundreds sang the French national anthem, 'La Marseillaise'.

The French leader was all smiles for a dozen minutes as he shook hands, with many guests thanking him with a warm "merci."