Germany ready for World Cup, government says

31st May 2006, Comments 0 comments

31 May 2006, BERLIN - Germany has taken all the necessary precautions to host a successful World Cup, Interior Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said Wednesday.

31 May 2006

BERLIN - Germany has taken all the necessary precautions to host a successful World Cup, Interior Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said Wednesday.

"You can sense how much everyone is looking forward to the event," Schaeuble said at the presentation of the government's World Cup progress report, which was approved earlier in the day by the cabinet. "We have created the conditions for a successful World Cup and are looking forward to the start of the competition on June 9."

Franz Beckenbauer, president of the World Cup organizing committee, praised the cooperation between his organization and football's governing body FIFA in the run up to the World Cup.

Schaueble said all possible measures had been taken to ensure the safety of the estimated three million visitors expected to come to Germany for the month-long tournament.

But he could not rule out incidents like that in Berlin last weekend when a drunken teenager ran amock after a public gathering and injured more than 30 people with a knife.

"One hundred per cent security cannot be guaranteed," said the minister, pointing out that an attack like that in Berlin had nothing to do with the World Cup.

The minister said a National Cooperation and Information Centre had been set up at the interior ministry to oversee World Cup security.

Some 500 liaison officers from the 32 participating nations would also be in Germany to help local police pinpoint troublemakers, he said.

He also said there would be a special anti-racism programme at stadiums from the quarter-finals onwards, with teams carrying banners against discrimination.

Germany wanted to show the world it was not hostile to foreigners, Schaeuble said in reference to a string of xenophobic attacks which have rocked the country recently.

DPA

Subject: German News

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