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A Man Threatened to Blow Himself Up on the Train in France

A Man Threatened to Blow Himself Up on the Train in France
photo: TASR/AP/A Man Threatened to Blow Himself Up on the Train in France
10 / 02 / 2023

French security forces detained a 24-year-old man on Friday who threatened to blow himself up on a high-speed TGV train.

They are already assessing his psychiatric condition as no explosives were found on him. It was reported by the police and referred to by the AFP news agency. The TGV train bound for Paris from the town of Colmar in northeast France was delayed because it was stopped to allow security forces to intervene, a spokesman for the state railway company SNCF explained.

"The crisis is over, and it's under control," he told AFP. Local police said the 24-year-old man "threatened to blow himself up" and asked passengers if they believed in God, but he was not carrying a weapon or explosives. The train with 280 passengers stopped briefly in the northeastern village of Louvigny just before 08.00 CET to allow police to take action and detain the man for "threatening to commit an attack."

Around 100 members of the security forces and specially trained dogs made a "thorough search" of the train but found nothing suspicious. Then, at around 10.20 am GMT, the train was allowed to move towards its destination again. According to investigators, the man, who had already made similar threats on a train in the northeastern city of Reims last year, is undergoing a "psychiatric examination."

A police source said the man was first detained by a police officer travelling on the train as a regular passenger under a scheme allowing police officers to ride free of charge if they make their presence known to the conductor. This rule "proves every day how useful it is for the safety of the French people in the transport," Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin said.