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14 June, 2024
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Bedbugs threaten 2024 Olympics in Paris

France's bedbugs comeback story


In recent weeks, a concerning surge of bedbugs has been reported not only in Paris but also in several other French cities.

This infestation, as described by some French and international media outlets, has sparked a nationwide case of "entomophobia" and raised apprehensions about the health and safety of the upcoming Olympic Games scheduled for next summer.

Paris Deputy Mayor Emmanuel Gregoire has taken a proactive stance, urging the government to address this alarming issue before the arrival of a massive influx of visitors for the 2024 Olympics, which will be hosted by the City of Light.

Disturbing videos depicting bedbugs infesting city trains and the metro network have been circulating widely on social media, causing both citizens and experts to sound the alarm.

Travelers have become increasingly vigilant, inspecting their belongings, suitcases, and seats with a sense of anxiety. One train passenger expressed, "It makes me very anxious. I had to take the train and I was wondering if I'd come back with bugs. But then again, you can find them in cinemas and in fact everywhere."

The pervasive fear of bedbugs has led to a state of widespread anxiety and paranoia among the populace, as confirmed by a pest control service manager who stated, "Everyone is panicking. People really get nervous about it, until they get paranoid."

Despite the growing concerns, Health Minister Aurelien Rousseau and experts are trying to offer reassurance, recommending a sense of calm. Minister Rousseau emphasized, "There is no need to panic. France has not been overrun by bedbugs," during an interview.

Entomologist Jean-Michel Berenger shed light on the seasonal pattern of bedbug occurrences, explaining, "Every late summer, we witness a significant increase in bedbugs.

This is because people move a lot in July and August and inadvertently transport these pests with them upon their return. Each year, the seasonal surge appears to be more pronounced than the previous summer."

Historically, bedbugs had disappeared from France around 1950, only to reemerge in the 1990s due to the increased volume of travel traffic, as reported by French media.

[With information sourced from Reuters]

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