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Nine French schools hit by new attack threats
Photo: Twitter

Nine French schools hit by new attack threats

Ben McPartland · 1 Feb 2016, 09:50

Published: 01 Feb 2016 09:50 GMT+01:00

Pupils at the lycées Henry IV, Condorcet and Louis le Grand were evacuated while searches of the premises took place. 

Six schools in central France's Lyon were also evacuated, after someone called and said "You will all die", reported the Liberation newspaper.

Police were called out after the threats were made, but all turned out to be hoaxes.

The tweet below for Paris education chiefs said pupils had been taken to a safe place while police secured the school.

The same Paris schools were the subject of hoax bomb threats on two separate occasions last week, when eight lycées across the French capital were evacuated.

Each time pupils were confined to a safe place while searches were carried out. In each case nothing was found and the calls were treated as hoaxes. 

With France still on high alert after the November attacks the threats, which have been made via anonymous phone calls have been treated seriously by police and education authorities.

Fears were also raised when the Isis group's French-language magazine Dar-al-Islam called in its November edition for its followers to kill teachers in the French education system, describing them as "enemies of Allah".

SEE ALSO: Who is behind the threats to attack Paris schools?

French terrorism expert François-Bernard Huyghe played down the idea of a real terror threat telling The Local that the calls are probably being made by "pupils who don't want to go to school".
 
Yet Huyghe says that given the state of alert in France police and education authorities have no choice but to take them seriously.
 
"After November we know that jihadists are prepared to pick any kind of target," he said. "We are becoming more and more paranoid. It's a vicious circle," Huyghe says
 
"Police have to apply the principle of precaution. Even if the alerts don't appear serious, they have to be treated as such. We can't just ignore them," he says.
 
Story continues below…
"I don't know if there's an easy solution. Although the more we talk about them, the more chance there is of copy cat calls."
 
Huyghe does not believe the threats are coming from Isis even though they would no doubt be only too delighted at the disruption and panic caused.

 

Ben McPartland (ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

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