Heavy Security For Asia-Pacific Summit In Sydney
Mon Sep 3, 2007 18:57

Heavy Security For Asia-Pacific Summit In Sydney

(RTTNews) - Sydney is preparing for the upcoming Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit with steel barriers across the city that is expected to see a massive security cover involving over 5,000 security men, touted as Australia's biggest security operation ever, reports the BBC. The skies around Sydney will be under the control of fighter jets and police coppers, while the Australian navy would secure the waters around the city. The summit is expected to attract several thousand protesters and police officials expect demonstrations to turn violent. The police have issued warnings not to gather around the venue, however activists opposed to the Iraq war and global warming are likely to turn up in good numbers to make their point. The barriers extend over three miles will separate and protect 21 leaders to the meet, including President Bush and President Putin.

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Australian PM warns APEC protesters via YouTube

Updated Mon. Sep. 3 2007 1:16 PM ET

CTV.ca News Staff

As Australia prepares for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit, Prime Minister John Howard took to the Internet to speak with Australians about security "inconveniences" and rowdy protesters.

In an eight-minute video message posted on YouTube, APEC spokesperson Anne Fulwood and Howard speak about the extra security measures that have been put in place to deal with possible threats to world leaders.

"Violent protesters will most probably target APEC. There will be other protesters who will do so peacefully but for those who don't and seek to disrupt APEC, there will be significant policing and security responses taken," Fulwood said.

The mention of security and protesters came more than five minutes into the video.

Sydney is already under a security stronghold in anticipation of the international summit.

More than 5,000 police and troops have been deployed to keep watch and authorities have already closed down a section of Sydney's downtown core with concrete and steel barriers. Jet-skis and speed boats are also patrolling the harbour for signs of trouble.

"So far there's been a focus on the potential inconvenience caused by the APEC meeting," Howard said in the video. "Unfortunately, extra security percautions that need to be taken are a necessary part of hosting such a meeting in today's world."

The meeting with 21 world leaders, including U.S. President George Bush and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, is an annual high-profile summit to discuss economic interests in the Pacific-Asian region. Meetings will begin this week until Sept. 9.

Climate change and energy policies will likely be the issues at the top of the agenda along with human rights and trade.

Howard addressed protesters in his video message, saying discussions at the APEC summit shouldn't be interrupted because of their importance to key issues.

"I simply ask (disruptive protesters) to stop for a moment and consider that if they really are worried about the issues such as poverty, security and climate change, then they should support APEC and not attack it," he said.


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