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Environment

Police investigate threat to dismantle transmission towers

media Anonymous packages have been sent to authorities in southeastern France threatening to dismantle electricity transmission towers Getty Images

Police are investigating mail packages sent to four French regions containing bolts from electricity transmission towers and a letter threatening to dismantle the towers in an apparent protest against nuclear power.

The packages were sent to the administration of the Vaucluse, Gard, Drôme and Bouches-du-Rhône departments in southeastern France on Tuesday as well as the offices of media outlets such as newspapers Dauphiné Libéré, Midi Libre and national radio station France Bleu.

The Drôme department said a staff member at Nyons found a package with a letter and a large bolt, the type of which are used to secure overhead power lines on transmission towers.

The company in charge of the electricity transmission network, RTE, confirmed the bolts were used on their towers. Each tower has between 650 and 900 bolts, spokeswoman Catherine Greiveldinger told news agency AFP.

“We did a visual check of our lines at strategic points between yesterday and today, and we haven’t yet found any missing bolts,” she added.

The anonymous author of the letter accompanying the bolts said: “because their [sic] nuclear energy is neither sure nor transparent, we are unbolting transmission towers….in solidarity with the civilian and military victims of nuclear dictatorship.”

The letter warned “the situation risks being serious, since you can protect nuclear reactors with barbed wire and pelotons of security guards, but that’s not the case for transmission towers.”

In France, nearly 80 percent of electricity comes from nuclear power, the highest percentage in the world.

Tuesday was the 68th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Japan, by the United States at the end of World War II.

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