15 Sep 2010

Eiffel Tower evacuated after bomb scare

11:50 am on 15 September 2010

About 2000 people have been evacuated from the Eiffel Tower in Paris and its surrounding park after a bomb scare.

Officials say the alarm was raised after an anonymous call shortly before 9pm local time (1900 GMT) on Tuesday to the company which manages the famous landmark.

A police cordon was placed around the tower and about 1000 people moved to the banks of the River Seine.

Sniffer dogs were carrying out a search of the area. But police later said it was a false alarm.

"Nothing was found," a police officer told AFP.

The 324 metre iron tower was built in 1889.

The BBC reported the Saint-Michel train station - which was the target of a deadly attack in 1995 - was also briefly evacuated on Tuesday following a similar threat.

French TV channel TF1 reported the government increased security at certain sites between 2 August - 15 September, in part because of threats from al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb.