French Authorities Say They Prevented Plan to Attack Soccer Events at 2024 Olympics

French Authorities Say They Prevented Plan to Attack Soccer Events at 2024 Olympics
Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIMay 31, 2024

LILLE, FRANCE - MARCH 20: The Paris 2024 logo, representing the Olympic and Paralympic games, is seen 128 Days prior to the start of the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic games on March 20, 2024 in Lille, France. The Pierre Mauroy stadium in Villeneuve-d’Ascq will host the basketball and handball competitions during the XXXIII Olympic Summer Games, from 26 July to 11 August.  (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)

Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

The General Directorate of Internal Security, a French security agency, has arrested an 18-year-old man from Chechnya who was planning an attack on Olympic soccer events being held at Geoffroy-Guichard stadium in Saint-Etienne this summer, per the Associated Press.

Gerald Darmanin, France’s interior minister, revealed the news in a statement Friday. The 18-year-old was reportedly arrested on May 22. His goal was to target spectators and police forces and “to die and become a martyr.”

Per the Olympic schedule, three men’s and three women’s group matches are slated for Geoffroy-Guichard stadium from July 24-31.

Obviously, security is of the utmost importance, especially at the Olympics. Tragically, the Olympics have seen two deadly terrorist attacks in their history at Munich in 1972 and Atlanta in 1996.

This year’s security efforts also pose a greater challenge with the Opening Ceremony being held outside a stadium for the first time in Games history. Instead, it will be held on the Seine, with athletes being transported via boat on the river.

Ultimately, this is a great challenge to secure the Games, but thankfully, one potential attack has been thwarted well in advance as preparations continue for the Olympics, which run from July 26 to August 11.

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