Monday, June 22, 2009

New Delhi steps up Commonwealth Games security

NEW DELHI (AP) — Indian sports minister Manohar Singh Gill says organizers are ready to counter the risk of a terrorist attack during the Commonwealth Games in New Delhi next year.

"Every road, stadium and car park will be centrally monitored," Gill said Thursday. "Hosting the games is not easy, a lot of work is to be done."

Security concerns about the safety of athletes were heightened by a terrorist attack on the Sri Lanka cricket team in neighboring Pakistan last year, but Gill said athletes and spectators should be reassured that elaborate security measures were planned for the event, scheduled for Oct. 3-14.

"Safety is an issue we have to deal with. We'll provide a secure Commonwealth Games," Gill said.

Organizers had said the government would form a Games task force comprising officials from several security agencies, and security arrangements will be tested during a series of trial events.

The London-based Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) said security arrangements were subject to continual review.

The Commonwealth Games feature 71 nations and territories that formerly comprised the British Empire.

New Delhi was chosen to host the 2010 Commonwealth Games after several failed bids, becoming only the second Asian city to be allocated the games. Malaysia's capital, Kuala

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