Europe

23,000 police mobilized to protect Tour de France

  • FILE - This Monday July 7, 2008 file photo shows French police holding back demonstrating harbor workers during the third stage of the Tour de France cycling race between Saint-Malo and Nantes, western France. Cyclists at this year’s Tour de France will be under the watch of 23,000 police, including SWAT-like intervention squads, as the government tries to ensure security amid extremist threats. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena, File)

    FILE - This Monday July 7, 2008 file photo shows French police holding back demonstrating harbor workers during the third stage of the Tour de France cycling race between Saint-Malo and Nantes, western France. Cyclists at this year’s Tour de France will be under the watch of 23,000 police, including SWAT-like intervention squads, as the government tries to ensure security amid extremist threats. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - This Saturday July 21, 2012file photo shows Bradley Wiggins of Britain, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, escorted by French police after crossing the finish line of the 19th stage of the the Tour de France cycling race, an individual time trial over 53.5 kilometers (33.2 miles) with start in Bonneval and finish in Chartres, France. Cyclists at this year’s Tour de France will be under the watch of 23,000 police, including SWAT-like intervention squads, as the government tries to ensure security amid extremist threats. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong, File)

    FILE - This Saturday July 21, 2012file photo shows Bradley Wiggins of Britain, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, escorted by French police after crossing the finish line of the 19th stage of the the Tour de France cycling race, an individual time trial over 53.5 kilometers (33.2 miles) with start in Bonneval and finish in Chartres, France. Cyclists at this year’s Tour de France will be under the watch of 23,000 police, including SWAT-like intervention squads, as the government tries to ensure security amid extremist threats. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong, File)  (The Associated Press)

Cyclists at this year's Tour de France will be under the watch of 23,000 police, including SWAT-like intervention squads, as the government tries to ensure security amid extremist threats.

France has been in a state of emergency since attacks on Paris in November killed 130 people, with soldiers guarding landmarks and religious sites. The emergency measures were extended last week to cover the European Championship next month and the Tour de France, which runs July 2-24.

Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve met Tuesday with Christian Prudhomme, president of the organization that runs the Tour, and afterward announced exceptional security measures for this year's race.

Securing the Tour is unusually difficult, as crowds of fans gather informally on narrow mountain roads and city streets along thousands of kilometers around France.