France has detained more journalists who wanted to report on drones with a drone

Les Invalides, one of the landmarks where mysterious drones have been spotted.
Les Invalides, one of the landmarks where mysterious drones have been spotted.
Image: Reuters/Gonzalo Fuentes
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Earlier today, four journalists working for Bayerischer Rundfunk, a German public broadcasting station, were detained by police at the Parc de la Villette in Paris for preparing to fly a drone, according to Le Parisien (link in French). The four were reportedly planning to use the drone to film a story on the recent spate of mysterious drones spotted flying around important landmarks in Paris. The city is, understandably, on edge in the wake of January’s Charlie Hebdo attacks.

Unlike the three Al Jazeera journalists arrested last month—who were also reporting on the mysterious drones—the German journalists did not actually use their drone, and were released without being arrested. (Quartz has contacted Bayerischer Rundfunk for any additional information, and we’ll update this story when we hear back.)

The strange drone sightings have not stopped since they were initially sighted in late February. According to the French media, around 10 more drones have been spotted this week, and authorities still do not know who is responsible. Flying a drone during the day in Paris requires a license; flying one at night is illegal. The drones have been seen flying near the Eiffel Tower, Place de la Concorde, the US Embassy, the national military museum, and various other locations. There have also been about 60 sightings of drones flying near French nuclear facilities since October.