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Security bolstered ahead of Pope''s visit

By Vision Reporter

Added 13th November 2015 02:11 PM

POLICE will deploy over 10,000 officers backed by soldiers when Pope Francis visits later this month

POLICE will deploy over 10,000 officers backed by soldiers when Pope Francis visits later this month.

 

Army spokesperson Paddy Ankunda said that given past attacks by the Somali-led Al-Shabaab Islamists, the army were "not taking anything for granted", although no uniformed troops will be deployed near the pope.

 

Al-Shabaab bombers killed 76 people in Kampala in 2010, and police say they have foiled a number of attacks by rebel groups since.

 

Ugandan troops in Somalia are fighting Al-Shabaab insurgents as part of an African Union force, and the Islamists make regular threats.

 

"The threats have always been coming from Al-Shabaab," police spokesman Fred Enanga told AFP, who said 10,200 officers would be deployed to ensure the Pope's safety.

 

"He's a very prominent, very popular figure," Enanga said. "We have to raise the stakes."

 

It will be the third papal visit to Uganda - after Pope Paul VI in 1969 and Pope John Paul II in 1993 - where around two-fifths of people are Catholic.

 

In Uganda, the Pope will conduct mass at Namugongo Martyrs Shrine, where early Christian converts executed in the late 1880s are remembered.

 

Uganda is the second of three African countries the pontiff will visit, after being in neighbouring Kenya from November 25 to 27.

 

After two days in Uganda, he will travel to Central African Republic (CAR), where his trip will end on November 30, according to a Vatican itinerary.

 

Kenya has also said it will deploy up to 10,000 police to protect him.

 

But France has said the visit to strife-hit Central African Republic is "risky" and French troops on the ground could not ensure his safety, France's defence ministry said Wednesday.

AFP

Security bolstered ahead of Pope''s visit

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