A total of 15 airports across France were evacuated, and 130 flights were cancelled on Wednesday, October 18, after emailed „threats of attack”, the latest in a series of similar threats in recent days.
An initial six airports were evacuated on Wednesday morning after receiving bomb threats, but the total spiralled throughout the day until 15 airports throughout France had been evacuated, reports The Local. Most airports have allowed passengers to return to their seats after on-site screening, but delays of several hours are expected.
Some airports had received bomb threats, mainly by email, while others initiated security protocols after seeing suspicious packages or abandoned luggage. Most evacuations lasted a couple of hours or less, and no bombs were found.
l’aéroport de toulouse évacué mais que se passe-t-il ? 🤨🤨 pic.twitter.com/SaqbyGrFLr
— L-A (@pyjamay_) October 18, 2023
Transport Minister Clément Beaune said that 17 airports had received threats, 15 of those evacuated passengers, and 130 flights were cancelled.
17 aéroports menacés.
15 aéroports évacués.
130 vols annulés. De très nombreux retards.
Ces fausses alertes ne sont pas des mauvaises blagues. Elles sont des délits. Elles seront sanctionnées.
— Clement Beaune (@CBeaune) October 18, 2023
Airports affected were: Bordeaux, Lyon (both Lyon-Saint-Exupéry and Lyon Bron), Rennes, Lille, Toulouse, Paris Beauvais, Nice, Strasbourg, Biarritz, Pau, Nantes, Brest, Tarbes-Lourdes and Carcassonne.
In addition to the cancelled flights, there were delays and disruptions throughout the day, with some flights re-routed to other airports.
The incidents followed other bomb threats in France since Hamas’s October 7 attack on Israel and Friday’s fatal stabbing of a teacher in the northern city of Arras by a man claiming allegiance to the Islamic State group.
Image copyright: AFP