Suspicious bag causes Paris security alert

Election campaign posters for French centrist presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron and far-right candidate Marine Le Pen are displayed in front of the polling station where Marine Le Pen will vote in Henin Beaumont, northern France, Saturday, May 6, 2017. Voting for France's next president starts in overseas territories and French embassies abroad, as a blackout on campaigning descends so that voters can reflect on whether to entrust their country's future to independent Emmanuel Macron or far-right populist Marine Le Pen. (AP Photo/Francois Mori)

PARIS (AP) – Emmanuel Macron’s campaign press office says it was a suspicious bag that prompted the evacuation of the courtyard outside the Louvre museum where the centrist French presidential candidate has planned to celebrate election night.

Macron’s team said a press room had been set up at the downtown Paris location and 300 journalists who were on site have been evacuated as a precaution.

The Louvre already was being heavily guarded after an extremist attacker targeted soldiers near the museum during the presidential campaign.

The Paris police prefecture Tweeted a reassuring message: “#Louvre These are simple verification measures carried out as precautionary measure.”

The runoff election in which Macron is competing against far-right candidate Marine Le Pen is being conducted under the watch of 50,000 security forces guarding against extremist attacks.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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