U.S. citizens in Switzerland have been warned about the increased threat level in Geneva as Swiss authorities hunt for suspects related to last month’s terrorist attacks in Paris.
“In this time of elevated threat, the U.S. Embassy in Bern reminds U.S. citizens to review personal security plans; remain aware of surroundings at all times, and monitor local news stations for updates,” said the message to American citizens. “We also recommend maintaining a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance personal security.”
Authorities in Geneva issued an alert noting that police “are actively looking for people whose description was provided by the [Swiss] Confederation.”
“On the basis of this information,” Geneva officials said, the city was “increasing its level of alertness.”
The reports of “suspicious individuals” in the area came in Wednesday afternoon. “Investigations are carried out in close collaboration with national and international services in order to locate and question these individuals,” Geneva officials said. “In the current state, and for obvious operational reasons, no additional information can be given regarding these investigations.”
“In parallel with the above steps, additional police forces were deployed on the territory of Geneva and the level of vigilance is raised.”
Circumstances have raised fears that an attack on Geneva is in the works. NBC News reported that the CIA tipped off Swiss officials to the threat.
State Department press secretary John Kirby didn’t have comment on the threat during Thursday’s press briefing. “It sounds like this is an evolving situation, so I just don’t have anything new on that,” he said.
Swiss public broadcaster RTS reported today that “that two men of Syrian origin have been arrested in Geneva with traces of explosives found in their vehicle,” according to the Associated Press, but it’s unclear whether they were among the individuals being sought in the manhunt.