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French arrest over suspected Olympic torch relay plot

A man has been detained on suspicion of planning an attack on the Olympic torch relay in Bordeaux, French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin has said, the BBC reports.

He gave few details but praised police for ensuring security during Thursday’s relay.

Prosecutors said the suspect had written a disturbing message that “could correspond to glorifying crime.” He also referred to a previous mass killing in the US, they added.

The Olympic flame arrived in Marseille earlier this month, ahead of the Paris Games, which start on 26 July.

Paris 2024 organizers have spoken of an unprecedented security operation, with an opening ceremony involving more than 10,000 athletes being ferried along the River Seine.

The Olympic flame was due to arrive in Bordeaux late on Thursday afternoon, after a day of events marking its passage through the surrounding area.

Bordeaux prosecutor Frédérique Porterie said an investigation had been launched in response to an online message that referred to the killing of six people in their late teens and early 20s exactly 10 years ago in Isla Vista, California.

The prosecutor said police then identified the suspect – named as Alex G – who was arrested on Tuesday. She said he had no criminal record but during a search of his home a rubber pellet revolver was seized along with several mobile phones and a computer.

“Initial investigations revealed the individual’s interest in the Incel movement.”

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