Friday, 27 July 2007

Security for Universiade 2007

As I was heading out today I noticed a large crowd of people buzzing around in the courtyard of Interzone, which is a small plaza with administration offices and shops that service the Asiangames Dormitories at the Thammasat campus.

There was a large gathering of police in riot gear doing drills in preparation for the upcoming World University Games. A few dozen civilian volunteers had gathered to stage a minor mock riot. They pelted the police with empty plastic bottles instead of rocks and emergency workers "rescued" a few injured onlookers.

I missed most of the festivities but managed to get a few shots.

Riot police training for Universiade 2007

Medical staff helping "injured" woman

The security measures being taken for the games are thorough and are going to end up impeding my ability to move around easily in the next few weeks. 8 foot high chain link fences are going up everywhere and are going to force me to take circuitous routes to get to various places. Even leaving the campus will be more difficult due to part of the main road being closed off to buses and other traffic.

All necessary I suppose. With 10, 000 athletes from more than 100 countries arriving in a few weeks, this is the kind of high profile event that could be targeted. The troubles in the south, the political problems in the last year or so and liability issues mean nothing will be spared in keeping the athletes and spectators as safe as possible.

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