No-fly zone to aid WYD papal mass security

Emergency services in Germany said yesterday that they are ready for this month's open-air Papal Mass, which will represent the high point of the World Youth Day festivities in Cologne.

Expatica reports that large numbers of police and ambulance attendants are expected to be on duty in Cologne during the 16-21 August World Youth Day event in the city.

Ingo Wolf, interior minister of North Rhine-Westphalia state, said that with 12,000 staff on duty, it was the biggest joint operation by police, fire services and civil-defence agencies in the 56-year history of the state.

On the 260-hectare Marienfeld, a remodelled opencast coal-mine where Benedict is to preach on 21 August, some 2500 ambulance personnel in 25 first-aid stations could theoretically cope with up to 25,000 people fainting or suffering other injuries.

Four medical-evacuation helicopters are scheduled to be on standby to take people to hospital if necessary.

Security at the Marienfeld will be in the hands of 4000 personnel. An estimated 400,000 young pilgrims, including 2200 Australians, are expected be joined at the Mass by an unknown number, perhaps 400,000 to 600,000, of older Catholics keen to see the German-born pope.

A top-level alert has been declared for the four-day papal visit beginning 18 August, with special forces patrolling land, air and the river Rhine.

A no-fly zone has been declared to keep light aircraft away from the city.

Emergency services hone plans for papal mass (Expatica/DPA 4/8/05)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
World Youth Day - Australia
World Youth Day - International
World Youth Day - Vatican

Youth make biggest ever pilgrimage to leave Australia (CathNews 4/8/05)
400 Melbourne youth head to Cologne to meet new Pope (CathNews 3/8/05)
Sydney WYD champagne corks await word from Pope (CathNews 2/8/05)
Vatican journo claims 2008 WYD 'winner is Sydney' (CathNews 1/8/05)
Terror threat changes WYD plans for Sydney pilgrims (CathNews 28/7/05)
WYD preparations enter home stretch (CathNews 20/7/05)
World Youth Day cross begins final push for Cologne (CathNews 7/7/05)
Pell leads bid for Sydney World Youth Day (CathNews 5/7/05)
Pope's trip to World Youth Day officially announced (CathNews 22/6/05)
Cardinal urges pope to keep World Youth Day commitment (CathNews 3/3/05)
German organizers further plans for World Youth Day (CathNews 7/1/05)

Ukrainian journalists are denied entry to Germany to cover the visit of the Pope of Rome (Interfax 4/8/05)
Local Pilgrims Prepare for World Youth Day (Catholic Herald 4/8/05)
Diocesan groups prepare spiritually, logistically for World Youth Day (Catholic News Service 4/8/05)
Largest Australian pilgrimage group ever departs for WYD (Catholic News Agency 4/8/05)
Young pilgrims set out to 'worship Him' (Catholic Weekly 7/8/05)
Large, expectant Australian delegation heads for World Youth Day (Catholic World News 4/8/05)
Laramie's youth set out to join the world's youth (Laramie Boomerang)
Nearly 650 WYD pilgrims gear up for Germany (Pittsburgh Catholic 29/7/05)

5 Aug 2005