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France raises vigilance level as security threats turn real

09-21-2010 08:55 BJT

PARIS, Sept. 20 (Xinhua) -- French Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux said on Monday that the country is facing a real threat from terrorism, and has raised vigilance degree in response.

"The terrorist threat is real. So vigilance has been raised ... We've mobilized all the necessary means to prevent any dangerous acts," the minister told local media while asked about a thwarted attack sometime last week.

French authorities have frustrated a plot by a suspected suicide bomber, who planned to blow a busy part of Paris last week, local media quoted a source close to the Interior Ministry as saying.

Hortefeux confirmed that a red alert has been activated, the penultimate level before the level scarlet which was only used in case of identifying the risk of an imminent attack.

However, the minister didn't specify whether the potential attacks are targeting the transport system, as reported by the local media. "The threat hasn't been specified in the past days," said Hortefeux.

France's Internal Anti-espionage Chief Bernard Squarcini warned earlier last week that the risk of a terrorist strike on French soil had never been higher.

France's recent ban on wearing burqa in all public places across the country has triggered anger and threats from some extremist groups.

Last week a fake bomb alert resulted in the evacuation of about 2,500 people touring the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

Editor:Li yang |Source: Xinhua

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