France on high alert for presidential election

NTD Staff
By NTD Staff
May 3, 2017Worldshare

France will have 3,500 soldiers of Operation Sentinelle patrolling the streets of Paris during the May 7 election.

“Voting day is an important moment in the life of a country, so it is of course important for our forces to be deployed as widely as possible to guarantee the security and the electoral right of our fellow citizens,” said Defense Ministry spokesman Col. Benoit Brulon.

Operation Sentinelle was created in 2015 after a wave of terror attacks killed 130 people.

Now its soldiers will be protecting voters choosing between centrist Emmanuel Macron and far-right Marine Le Pen.

Some Sentinelle troops are already in position, patrolling tourist spots, looking for abandoned cars and suspicious packages—and people.

Sentinelle group leader, 28-year-old Sgt. Julien said, “Today, (we are) on a patrol on the Trocadero (a square with view of Eiffel Tower) to dissuade, to protect, to reassure the population in tourist places, between the two presidential rounds and so the tourists that are around feel safe. There you are.”

France has been hit hard by terror attacks in the past two years. Some 230 French people have fallen victim to bombs, trucks, and guns. No specific threats have been announced, but France doesn’t want to take any chances.

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