A Frenchman in the “advanced stages” of a plot to attack the country was arrested Thursday northwest of Paris and security forces locked down the area during a major search, France’s interior minister said.
#Argenteuil : l’individu interpellé, de nationalité française, est suspecté d’être impliqué à un haut niveau dans ce projet.
— Ministère Intérieur (@Place_Beauvau) March 24, 2016
Bernard Cazeneuve said there were no links “at this stage” between the plot and the attacks against Brussels this week or Paris in November.
Cazeneuve said bomb squads were on site. The raid took place in Argenteuil, on the northern outskirts of the French capital. He noted that the person arrested was implicated at a “high level” in the plot, but offered no details.
Perquisition anti-terroriste à Argenteuil. Les accès au boulevard General Delambre sont fermés. pic.twitter.com/zknUFoZdWl
— Djamel Mazi (@djamel_mazi) March 24, 2016
— Le Parisien (@le_Parisien) March 24, 2016
Witnesses told France’s i-Tele network that the immediate area had been locked down, and residents were unable to return home.
— Yesstif (@Yesstif) March 24, 2016
France has been on high alert since the Nov. 13 attacks in Paris that killed 130 people and injured hundreds. Cazenueve said there had been 75 arrests since the beginning of the year, and 28 suspects had been jailed.