Beckstein sees security issues at Pope's funeral

6th April 2005, Comments 0 comments

6 April 2005, BERLIN - The interior minister of Bavaria, Guenther Beckstein, warned on Wednesday of potential security problems at the Pope's funeral on Friday.

6 April 2005

BERLIN - The interior minister of Bavaria, Guenther Beckstein, warned on Wednesday of potential security problems at the Pope's funeral on Friday.

"It poses endless challenges for security officials and it's apparent that there are security problems," said Beckstein, a member of the conservative Christian Social Union (CSU) who is known for his law and order views.

Beckstein told Germany's N24 TV that nobody could envy the Italians for facing such challenges.

"I assume that the respective protection measures will be sufficient in order to ensure that a large-scale attack is not possible," he said.

Overall responsibility for security at the pope's funeral remained with the Italian government but all security agencies in Europe would need to cooperate, said Beckstein.

Rome is to be declared a no-fly zone and all private road traffic is to be banned for Pope John Paul II's funeral. About 200 world leaders are due to attend along with millions of ordinary Catholics.

Germany will be represented by president Horst Koehler, chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, foreign minister Joschka Fischer and parliament president Wolfgang Thierse.

DPA

Subject: German news

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