France

Paris to deploy 12,000 police for Bastille Day and World Cup final

Police in Paris are in for a busy weekend.

The ongoing threat from terrorism and the huge crowds expected in the capital over the weekend means police and gendarmes will be out in their thousands, and there will also be an extra 3,000 security and first aid staff.

Some 2,000 soldiers will also patrol the streets over the weekend, as part of the Operation Sentinelle which has seen troops deployed around Paris since the January 2015 terror attacks.

Paris police chief Michel Delpuech said the deployment of 12,000 officers for Saturday's Bastille Day celebrations and the World Cup final on Sunday was "an important measure to make sure the party is not spoiled by any tragic incidents".

Saturday will see the traditional July 14th military parade down the Champs Elysées Avenue which will require a huge security presence and a police cordon set up around the area.

Saturday night will also see the traditional firework display at the Eiffel Tower where a heavy police presence will be in place.

On Sunday French football fans will flock to the city's bars as well as the giant screen that will be erected at the Champs de Mars under the Eiffel Tower in order to watch the final of the World Cup between Les Bleus and Croatia.

Security is expected to be tight at the Champs de Mars and fans can expect to be search several times on entry to the area. The fanzone is expected to accommodate up to 90,000 people.

"All access will be controlled, no one will get through without being searched and checked," said the Paris police chief.

If France win the World Cup early on Sunday evening fans will no doubt pour onto the streets as they did on Tuesday night after the semi-final victory over Belgium when people clambered on top of buses and blocked roads.

"In case of a victory for the France team, the celebration of this success will give rise to scenes of jubilation, crowd gatherings which we had a taste of already after the semi-final," said police chief Delpuech, who said that the area around the Champs Elysées would likely be blocked to traffic in the case of a triumph for Les Bleus.

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