Sydney security braces for Apec

Australia launches biggest ever security operation for Asia-Pacific summit.

    Sydney has launched an unprecedented security operation for the Apec summit [GALLO/GETTY]

    But his visit to Australia is expected to draw protests from anti-war groups and authorities are deploying up to 5,000 police and special forces troops on the streets of Sydney during the summit.

     

    A concrete and steel fence 5km long and nearly three metres high has cornered off much of the city's central business district.

     

    The unprecedented security operation is costing about $150m.

     

    Hundreds of protesters are expected to take to the streets during the summit and police say they are braced for violence.

     

    Police have refused a permit for an
    anti-war protest on Saturday [EPA]

    Dozens of detention cells have been cleared in anticipation of clashes.

     

    Ahead of Bush's arrival about 100 anti-war protesters held a peaceful demonstration outside Sydney's main rail station, chanting "Bush go home", "Out of Iraq" and "Go Back to Texas now".

     

    "We cannot sit on the sidelines while a warmonger like George Bush comes to our country," protest organiser Alex Bainbridge told the "Stop Bush 2007" rally.

     

    The biggest march is planned for Saturday, the first day of the Apec leaders' summit.

     

    Protest organisers say they expect around 10,000 protesters to turn up even though authorities have refused to grant a permit for the demonstration.

     

    With the Russian and Chinese presidents also attending the Apec summit, protesters also plan to demonstrate against human rights abuses in China, nuclear proliferation and global warming.

     

    On Monday John Howard, the Australian prime minister, took the unusual step of posting a message on YouTube appealing to protesters not to resort to violence.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    From the US to Afghanistan: Rediscovering the mother who left me

    From the US to Afghanistan: Rediscovering the mother who left me

    Tracee Herbaugh's mother, Sharon, abandoned her when she was born, pursuing a career from which she never returned.

    Could mega-dams kill the mighty River Nile?

    Could mega-dams kill the mighty River Nile?

    For Ethiopia, a new dam holds the promise of much-needed electricity; for Egypt, the fear of a devastating water crisis.

    The evening death came for me: My journey with PTSD

    The evening death came for me: My journey with PTSD

    On a gorgeous Florida evening, a truck crashed into me. As I lay in intensive care, I learned who had been driving it.