POPE BENEDICT XVI VISIT TURKEY SPECIAL - November 25, 2006

 

 

 

Texts and pictures are taken from the domestic press Hurriyet Newspaper - 2006

 

Turkish Security Department will take the highest-level security measures in Ankara, as well as in Istanbul and Izmir, during Pope Benedict XVI's visit to Turkey next week, sources told the A.A on Friday. A meeting took place at the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Wednesday with the participation of high-level officials from the MFA, the Security Department and the National Intelligence Agency (MIT) prior to the arrival of the Pope, scheduled for November 28th. During the meeting, all necessary measures to be taken during the visit were scrutinized. Accordingly, the highest-level security measures will be taken at Ankara's Esenboga Airport before and after landing of the plane carrying the Pope at about 1.00 p.m. All roads on the route of the Pope will be periodically controlled with explosive detectors. Turkish teams will also accompany the Pope who will be protected by his own bodyguards. The Security Department determined three different routes to be taken by the Pope when he travels from the airport to the city center. Also, a vehicle equipped with frequency- mixing devices will escort the automobile carrying the Pope. Benedict XVI will first visit the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. He will meet President Ahmet Necdet Sezer and Religious Affairs head Ali Bardakoglu later in the day. Since the Pope's visit is considered critical following his statement which created uneasiness in the Islamic world, the Security Department held a series of talks with non-governmental organizations for any likely protests.

Protestors will not be allowed to come closer to the routes to be used by the Pope. Benedict XVI will spend his first night in Turkey at the Vatican Embassy. Tight security measures will be taken in and around the embassy building. Nearly 3 thousand policemen will be deployed in Ankara during nearly 20-hour stay of the Pope.