France’s Palace of Versailles was evacuated for the sixth time in a week on Saturday following a bomb threat. False alerts in the country have been increasing since a teacher was stabbed to death in a jihadist attack on 13 October.
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“For security reasons, the Palace of Versailles is evacuating visitors and will reopen as soon as checks have been carried out,” an official statement issued shortly after noon said.
It’s understood the bomb threat was posted to moncommissariat.fr – a platform for online contact between citizens and police, where several other threats have recently been made.
The palace welcomes between 10,000 and 15,000 visitors in October, which falls at the end of the peak tourist season.
Increasing false alerts
Airports, schools and tourist sites have been targets. Airports including Bordeaux, Nice and Toulouse, Lille, Biarritz and Brest have been evacuated on multiple days this week, causing the cancellation of at least 130 flights.
Those behind the disruption are mostly minors, authorities say.
Justice Minister Eric Dupond-Moretti said 22 investigations into bomb threats had been opened, blaming “kids” who have “not no sense of responsibility”.
“There will obviously be convictions; we cannot let this happen,” Dupond-Moretti said, adding that the false alerts not only disputed air traffic but also cteated “a psychosis”.
The threats have increased since French language high school teacher Dominique Bernard, 57, was murdered by a former student, who had been radicalised, in the northern town of Arras.
France was placed on its highest terrorism alert following the killing.
https://www.rfi.fr/en/france/20231021-versailles-palace-evacuated-for-sixth-time-after-another-bomb-threat Versailles Palace evacuated for sixth time after another bomb threat