Bomb Found Near Parc Des Princes Hours Before PSG Kickoff, Five Arrested
An improvised explosive device was found near Parc des Princes, home of Paris St. Germain, on Saturday, French police confirmed, "as five men were arrested -- including one known Islamist extremist," according to Jack Austin of the London INDEPENDENT. The device was made up of four gas cylinders covered in petrol and was found near the stadium by a member of the public "just hours before" PSG was due to play against Bordeaux in front of "nearly 50,000 fans." The gas cylinders were "linked to a mobile phone that could ignite and cause an explosion." A source said, "The device was soaked in petrol and operational." French Interior Minister Gérard Collomb confirmed one of the men was known to police and was on the "FSPRT file," which denotes someone who has been so radicalized that he or she displays "possible signs of a terrorist" (INDEPENDENT, 10/3
). In London, Peter Allen reported all of those arrested on Saturday remain in custody, but "none have yet been formally identified." The bomb was diffused by experts at the scene following an evacuation. Details of the operation were not released until Tuesday as anti-terrorist police "carried out raids in the Paris suburbs linked to it." Collomb said that the building where the bomb was found "could have been the main target, but no theory was yet being ruled out." He added, "Blowing up a building in a chic neighborhood shows that no one is safe" (DAILY MAIL, 10/3
BOLSTERING POWER: REUTERS' Richard Lough reported France's parliament adopted an anti-terrorism bill on Tuesday that will "bolster police surveillance powers." More than 240 people have been killed in France in attacks since '15 by "assailants who pledged allegiance to, or were inspired by, Islamic State." Legislators in the lower house adopted the bill by a margin of 415 to 127 (REUTERS, 10/3).