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2012-05-30

Brazil Readies 15,000 Security Forces for Rio Summit

Officers patrol Santo Amaro shantytown in southern Rio de Janeiro, on May 18, 2012 during a joint operation between the Civil and Military Police and the National Guard. (Photo: AFP/Vanderlei Almeida)

Officers patrol Santo Amaro shantytown in southern Rio de Janeiro, on May 18, 2012 during a joint operation between the Civil and Military Police and the National Guard. (Photo: AFP/Vanderlei Almeida)

AFP

The Brazilian military will coordinate the deployment of 15,000 security personnel during next month’s UN summit on sustainable development here, Defense Minister Celso Amorim said Monday.

He said the army would deploy 8,000 troops who will be assisted by 7,000 police personnel.

“We did very detailed planning, with a lot of people and equipment to ensure that the conference takes place in peaceful conditions,” Amorim told a press conference.

Special units will be on standby to deal with any cyber or terror attacks, although the minister said there were no specific threats to the June 20-22 summit that will draw 115 world leaders and 50,000 participants.

“In today’s world, cyber attacks are a dangerous threat. We have to be on our guard to guarantee the security of all the conference documents,” Amorim said.

Security will be tightened at airports, ports and strategic installations such as gas and water plants while the air space over the Rio Centro convention center, the venue for the summit, will be closed.

The military said airports would operate normally, although priority would be given to the arrival and departure of official delegations.

The security measures will also apply to the parallel “people’s summit” at the Flamengo park in southern Rio, which will be sponsored by civil society and is expected to see attendance of nearly 20,000 people a day.

Rio+20, the fourth major summit on sustainable development since 1972, will seek to chart a course toward a “green” and social economy that can balance economic growth with poverty eradication and protection of the environment.

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