• France's news in English
France stages mock Euro 2016 chemical terror attack
All photos: AFP

France stages mock Euro 2016 chemical terror attack

The Local · 18 Mar 2016, 07:51

Published: 18 Mar 2016 07:51 GMT+01:00

More than 700 security personnel and 1,200 police cadets took part on Thursday in a simulated chemical attack on a football match as part of security preparations ahead of the 2016 Euro Championships to take place in France in June and July.

Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said as he arrived for the exercise that it would help "ensure that this great sporting festival takes place in conditions of maximum security".

Around 1,000 police cadets posing as football spectators were massed in a mock fan zone for the drill at the National Police School in the southern city of Nimes.

Suddenly, a massive explosion rocked the area and a cloud of gas rose into the air, sowing panic as the actors tried to flee to safety.

In the streets, rescue workers wearing gas masks and hazmat suits tended to actors posing as the injured and contaminated.

It was the first of several such drills planned in the run-up to the competition in the wake of last November's jihadist attacks in Paris that killed 130 people.

Story continues below…

One of the attacks took place at the Stade de France stadium in Paris as France were playing Germany in a football match, though the three suicide bombers were unable to enter the venue and only one person was killed outside.

The Stade de France will host the final of Euro 2016 on July 10th.

Three southern host cities - Marseille, Nice and Toulouse - will have fan zones for people to watch matches on giant screens outside the stadiums.

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
French fuel crisis latest: 5,100 petrol stations run dry
Photo: AFP

UPDATED: Some 40 percent of petrol stations have run dry in France.

Masked youths clash with police in Paris protest
Police and protesters also clashed in Paris last week. Photo: AFP

Labour protests in Paris have turned violent, again.

A complete guide to France's (many) ongoing strikes
All photos: AFP

A rundown of all the strikes in France today and in the coming days and weeks. Good luck.

Police raid McDonald's French HQ in tax probe
Photo: _Skynet/Flickr

French police have said that they raided the French headquarters of McDonald's in a tax probe.

Euro 2016
'You're not welcome': French police warn English yobs
England football fans burn a Tunisian flag in Marseille in 1998 during riots that marred the World Cup. Photo: AFP

French police tell English fans who might be heading to France to cause trouble: Don't bother.

Paris property prices gone mad? €50,000 for 3m² 'loft'
Ile Saint Louis. Photo: AFP

A sign of how mad property prices in Paris have become?

Readers' Views
French fuel strikes:  A tedious 'tantrum' or a 'sacred' duty?
Photo: AFP

The nationwide strikes and the fuel crisis have left France divided. Here's what you have had to say.

The French fuel crisis for dummies: 27 key questions
Photo: AFP

Everything you need to know about the French fuel crisis.

Good news from France: Unemployment rate falls again
Applicants talk to recruiters at a French jobs fair. Photo: AFP

Some much needed positive news for the French government

Five free smartphone apps to help you find petrol in France
Photo: CAFNR/Flickr

Looking for petrol in France? Here's how to find it with the help of your smartphone.

The French fuel crisis for dummies: 27 key questions
Sponsored Article
Eat, learn, live: unforgettable holidays in France
A complete guide to France's (many) ongoing strikes
Paris: Street artist makes the Louvre pyramid disappear
Interactive map: Where to find petrol in France
Who is the French union in a 'fight to the death' with the government?
Opinion: Why the French are absolutely right to go on strike
Here's why both sides despise France's labour reforms
Who is really to blame for the fuel crisis in France?
How to avoid running out of fuel if you're coming to France
Here are the parts of France hardest hit by the fuel shortages
It will soon be time to say 'au revoir' to the Paris Metro ticket
Revealed: The ultimate sex map of France
Migrants at Calais camp given dignity in death
How good is security at Charles de Gaulle airport?
How to make a traditional French cassoulet
IN PICS: Commuter trains in Paris get royal makeover
Terror attack 'likeliest cause' of missing EgyptAir plane
Who was on board the missing EgyptAir flight from Paris?
New map reveals Paris flat prices by Metro station
Paris: Here's how to find French cinema in English
How to say 'OUCH' in French (and ten other sounds)
Get ready: France to be hit by week of transport strikes
France readies for first national 'motorway party'
jobs available