The conclusion of World Youth Day on Sunday was the largest gathering of people in European history, according to sources of the Vatican's Zenit news agency.
    It claims that a larger number of people were congregated 'only on one other occasion in the history of humanity', the 1995 World Youth Day held in Manila. On that occasion, it was impossible to count the participants, but it is estimated that their number was between four and five million.
    Zenit's sources estimate a total of two million pilgrims attended the final Mass at Tor Vergata on Sunday, although the City of Rome estimates that the number of those present was somewhat greater.
    They provide the following statistical data:
1,400,000 came from Italy; 600,000 from the rest of the world.
160 countries were represented.
2000 people needed medical care due to heat and exhaustion.
25,000 volunteers guaranteed the event's organisation.
150 large trucks transported snacks and drinks.
81 electric light towers illuminated the Vigil with the Pope.
6,000,000 bottles of free mineral water were distributed.
12,000 portable toilets were installed.
1000 tons of trash were left in the Tor Vergata field.
5500 Italian police guaranteed safety.
Only two incidents of theft were reported to the police.

23 Aug 00

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