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France to extend state of emergency ahead of Euro football tournament

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By Euronews
France to extend state of emergency ahead of Euro football tournament

France plans to extend its state of emergency for another two months to ensure security at the Euro 2016 football tournament, Prime Minister Manuel Valls said on Wednesday (April 20).

The state of emergency was set up after the November terror attacks in Paris. It gives extra powers to police and security forces and currently runs until May 26.

“Faced with an event as big as Euro 2016, which has to ensure safety but should also be a party, with packed stadiums and fan zones… when you have big events like these, and I also have in mind the Tour de France, the president, the interior minister and myself thought that the state of emergency should be extended,“Valls told France Info radio.

Hours before, security forces simulated an attack in a major Paris train station. The training exercise aimed to test cooperation between the various branches of French police forces.

Representatives of the rural, urban and Paris special police carried out the operation overnight when the Montparnasse station was closed to the public. It normally links Paris to western French cities including Nantes, Bordeaux and Toulouse.

The month-long Euro football tournament will kick off on June 10th, with an opening match between France and Romania at the Stade de France, one of the targets of the deadly November attacks.