French cops against Euro fan zone due to security fears

Jun 03, 2016, 08:32 IST | AFP

The Paris police chief has proposed that a fan zone in the heart of the capital be shut when Euro 2016 matches are played in the city's two stadiums

Paris: The Paris police chief has proposed that a fan zone in the heart of the capital be shut when Euro 2016 matches are played in the city's two stadiums.

 France is on high alert and a large number of fans for Euro 2016 is seen as a potential terror target. Pic/Getty Images
 France is on high alert and a large number of fans for Euro 2016 is seen as a potential terror target. Pic/Getty Images

Police chief Michel Cadot cited the "exhaustion" of overstretched officers and the threat of terrorism, in a letter to Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve seen by AFP yesterday.

Paris is one of nine cities hosting the month-long football tournament from June 10 and a fan zone at the foot of the Eiffel Tower is set to accommodate some 90,000 supporters during matches.

However the party atmosphere of the European championships has been dampened by security fears and months of violent protests and transport strikes in France.

France on high alert
The country is already on high alert for possible terror attacks, and the gathering of tens of thousands of fans for the tournament is seen as a potential target.

In November, three suicide bombers blew themselves up outside of the national football stadium as part of a series of attacks on bars and restaurants in Paris.

"We have other things for our police to do, with the current risk, than keep a watch on fan zones," he said.

Prime Minister Manuel Valls has said fan zones should be maintained unless there was a specific threat.

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