Zurich reviews safety ahead of street music fest

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Police in the Swiss city of Zurich on Monday ordered a review of safety for the city's Street Parade music festival after 19 people were killed in a stampede at one of Europe's biggest such festivals in Germany.

City police spokesman Robert Soos told a local radio station that the move before the event on August 14, which attracts several hundred thousand people each year, would help ensure that arrangements could be improved to their utmost.

However, he underlined that local authorities would be hosting the techno music festival in Zurich's streets for the 19th time and had built up substantial experience.

More than 500 people were injured at the Love Parade festival in the German city of Duisburg on Saturday, after being trampled and crushed during a panicked scramble in a tunnel.

Spiegel magazine said on its website that the festival only had authorisation for 250,000 revellers instead of for 1.4 million people who organisers said had attended.

Remo Michel, organiser of the Street Parade, said no special security measures were planned although the Zurich organisers were studying the experience from Duisburg and "checking our concept."

"Before the Duisburg incident, we already have a very nice and developed security concept," Michel told AFP.

He claimed that the event in Zurich, which is expecting to host between 600,000 to 900,000 revellers, was different.

"We have four times bigger area and 30 entries. It's a completely different geography."

© 2010 AFP

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