Nice Carnival held under tight security after deadly terror attack
Added On February 15, 2017
The 133rd edition of the Nice Carnival, one of the largest in Europe, is underway in the southeastern French city under tight security.
The two-week festival, which started Saturday, comes seven months after a deadly terror attack. A Tunisian jihadist rammed a truck into crowds enjoying fireworks on Nice's seaside promenade on July 14, 2016, leaving 86 people dead.
This year, accesses to the carnival are controlled by 200 private security agents posted on 36 security checkpoints and 130 municipal police officers have been mobilized.
And for the first time, carnival revellers did not parade down Nice's Promenade des Anglais this year.
Organizers said they've spent an extra 300,000 euros (nearly 320,000 U.S. dollars) beyond the 6 million-euro (6.3 million-dollar) budget to reinforce security.
In order not to offend the sensitivity of the public, it is forbidden to wear a costume "which could be confusing," and no imitation of weapons is allowed.
An estimated 400,000 visitors worldwide have shown up for the carnival.
The theme of the carnival is "the King of Energies," which refers to different forms of energy such as electricity, fossil and solar energy.
During the parade, 17 floats went through the Place Massena, a historic square in Nice, accompanied by street performers and international musical troupes. Some floats resembled U.S, President Donald Trum and candidates for the upcoming French presidential election.
The Flower Battle, a tradition of the carnival, remained one of the highlights this year. Around 3,000 flowers were used per float and almost 70 percent of the flowers were locally produced.
The Nice Carnival has a long history. The term of carnival was mentioned for the first time in Nice in 1294. In 1873, the Festivities Committee was set up in the city and float parades began.