NEW YORK – President Barack Obama attended a dedication ceremony in lower Manhattan on Thursday for the official opening of the 9/11 museum, calling the building a place of "healing and of hope". The museum features a raft of exhibits, including half-destroyed fire trucks from the collapse, a wall with the faces of the victims that perished in the attacks, part of the original structure of one of the towers and a segment of one of the airplanes that slammed into the buildings on that September morning in 2001.
Addressing a crowd that included family members of the victims, rescuers and survivors of the terror operation, Obama said: "It's an honour to join in your memories, to recall and to reflect, but above all to reaffirm the true spirit of 9/11 - love, compassion, sacrifice - and to enshrine it forever in the heart of our nation. Like the great wall and bedrock that embrace us today, nothing can ever break us. Nothing can change who we are as Americans."
Before the ceremony, Obama toured the museum alongside his wife, Michelle, former President Bill Clinton, Former first lady Hillary Clinton and former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg. The museum is the latest additional to a site that already includes a memorial plaza, which opened in 2011. The entire site cost $700 million to build.