Six airports across France had to be hastily evacuated on Wednesday after they reportedly received bomb threats.
A source connected to the French police told AFP that Lille, Lyon, Nantes, Nice, Toulouse and Beauvais airports had been evacuated.
The airports were immediately evacuated to give authorities a chance to investigate the authenticity of the threats.
A spokesperson for the Strasbourg airport in the east of France also confirmed that this airport had to be evacuated after its management received a “threatening e-mail”.
However, France’s aviation authority could only confirm that four of the airports had been evacuated due to bomb threats.
A post by Nice Airport on X, formerly known as Twitter, states that security teams have been called to investigate after suspicious luggage was left behind.
“The situation has now returned to normal,” the airport said.
The Lyon and Lille airports also apparently resumed their operations as normal by Wednesday afternoon.
The aviation authority’s tool that monitors flights in France does show significant delays at Lille, Lyon and Toulouse airports.
A spokesperson for Lille Airport says three flights have been diverted, while a post on his X account said that security forces were on the scene.
It is not yet known what the origin of the threats is or whether they can be connected in any way.
The Versailles Palace outside Paris also had to be evacuated on Wednesday due to “security reasons”, but has since reopened its doors to visitors.
???? Dear visitors, for security reasons, the Palace of Versailles is evacuating visitors. Thank you for your understanding. pic.twitter.com/PejKRBSJwp
— Château de Versailles (@CVersailles) October 18, 2023
This is the third time in a few days that the tourist attraction has been forced to close. The Versailles Palace had to be evacuated on Tuesday due to a suspicious item and on Saturday due to terror warnings. The Louvre museum also received a message on Saturday that the safety of visitors was threatened.
Rugby fans from all over the world, including many South Africans, are currently in France to follow the Rugby World Cup.
French authorities are on high alert since the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas launched an attack on Israel on October 7, and a teacher was stabbed to death in France on Friday in what appears to be a terrorist attack.
A Jewish synagogue in Berlin, Germany, was attacked early Wednesday morning when it was pelted with two fuel bombs. No one was injured in the attack.
According to the German police, they are investigating a man who approached the synagogue and shouted slogans against Israel.
Olaf Scholz, the German chancellor, has also meanwhile undertaken to stop any attacks in Germany related to the conflict between Gaza and Israel.
An attack on Monday in Brussels, Belgium, also led to the evacuation of a football stadium. Two football fans died in the incident.