A previously unknown group called AZF claims to have planted nine bombs throughout the French rail system and vowed to explode them if not paid 5 millions euros. The group made its original threat in December and a warning March 8 stopped rail service for two hours between Paris and central France, Belgium and Spain while authorities combed the area around the Poitiers station looking for a bomb. A similar threat was made the previous week and 10,000 maintenance workers searched many miles of track but found no bombs. To prove their capabilities, the group earlier directed authorities to a bomb planted near a rail viaduct. There is no way to know if the group is serious, but travel in France could be disrupted by additional bomb threats. French rail officials said March 9 that service was back to normal.