The Eiffel Tower, one of France’s most iconic tourist attractions, was closed after three suspected terrorists ascended the structure, carrying “large rucksacks” from the exterior of the structure. The odd behavior of three individuals carrying the large bags up the Eiffel Tower was called into authorities, who quickly closed the attraction due to an apparent threat of terrorism.
Went to the Eiffel Tower yesterday, terrorist scare today. We got lucky! o/
— MattShea (@MattShea) September 20, 2015
The Daily Mail reports that the Eiffel Tower was closed to the public this morning following a terrorism scare. Witnesses claimed that three possible “terrorists” ascended the structure at around 5:30 a.m. The three individuals were carrying “large rucksacks” as they scaled the exterior of the landmark. This frightened people at the location, who proceeded to call authorities. As a result of the men’s behavior, the tower was closed down and anti-terrorism police were called to the scene.
— Terrormonitor.org (@Terror_Monitor) September 20, 2015
The reports indicate that helicopter support was called to the tower, but that the suspects evaded authorities by exiting the tower via parachute. Ultimately, the tower was reopened, and police believe the “suspected terrorists” were actual adventure sportsman.
Police claim that the men “completely disappeared” from the tower, and that it is believed they were not terrorists but “extreme parachutists.”
— TheBondBulletin (@thebondbulletin) September 20, 2015
‘There were reports of three people climbing the tower from the outside from about 5.30am. They were said to have large rucksacks so no chances could be taken. They completely disappeared, so enquiries are centered on them being extreme parachutists. There were of course fears that they may have left dangerous material on the the tower before leaving.”
The police said despite the men’s disappearance, they closed the attraction out of caution over the fear that dangerous materials could have been placed on the Eiffel Tower. Fortunately for those wanting to go up the tower, the attraction was reopened at approximately 2:00 p.m.
It was also noted that the Eiffel Tower has been the center of numerous bomb threats and is a noted target for terrorist groups such as ISIS. Though the men responsible for today’s closure are not likely terrorists, police say they are searching Paris for those responsible, as it resulted in the loss of hundreds of thousands of pounds.
[Image Credit: Getty Images / Jeff Mitchell]