Paris Bedbug Concerns Spike Ahead of Olympics

Less than a year before the Paris Olympic Games, the proliferation of bedbugs in France is worrying the foreign press. In the United States, Hong Kong, and even the United Kingdom, many voices are being raised to raise this problem.

A concern that transcends borders. While Paris is due to host the 2024 Olympic Games next July, the French capital is faced with a worrying proliferation of bedbugs. A phenomenon noted by the foreign press, which questions this issue while around 15 million visitors from the four corners of the globe are expected in Paris.


“Bedbugs attack Paris, fueling fears as the Olympic Games approach,” headlines the American television channel NBC News. “Videos posted on social networks appear to show the tiny insects crawling on the seats of a commuter train and the Paris metro,” writes the South China Morning Post. “Growing bedbug crisis in France”, “wave of panic and disgust widespread in the country”, evokes the English newspaper The Guardian.

Alerts posted in several foreign daily newspapers which all report the same concern: that of seeing the French capital infested by pests, without a real public policy being applied between now and the opening of the Olympic Games. To support their statements, the media report bedbugs found by Parisians in cinemas, or even on public transport, as well as statements from several local elected officials and political figures on this subject.


Indeed, the Minister of Transport, Clément Beaune, had notably declared that he would “summon public transport operators to inform them of countermeasures and how to do more to protect travelers”.

Emmanuel Grégoire, the first deputy mayor of Paris, had for his part written a letter to Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne to ask her to organize a conference on the fight against pests and to demand “that the State urgently bring together all the stakeholders concerned in order to deploy an action plan commensurate with this scourge as the whole of France prepares to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2024.

If concern remains, certain media, like CNN in the United Kingdom, nevertheless recalled the words of Emmanuel Grégoire, who had warned against “hysteria” on this subject, and reaffirmed that the Games Olympic Games were not “threatened” and were “an opportunity for everyone to work together on this problem.” As a reminder, according to specialists, over the last five years, bedbugs have infested one in ten homes in France.

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Beth Malcolm

Beth Malcolm is Scottish based Journalist at Heriot-Watt University studying French and British Sign Language. She is originally from the north west of England but is living in Edinburgh to complete her studies.