Obama in Israel 370.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Well over 10,000 police will take part in securing the three-day visit March
20-22 by US President Barack Obama, National Police Spokesman Micky Rosenfeld
Rosenfeld said the security preparations are the biggest of
their kind since then-US president George W. Bush visited in 2008.
will be joined by an entourage of 500 people, including staff, security and
traveling press. His Secret Service security detail will work in cooperation
with the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) General Security Services, in
preparing for the visit, Rosenfeld said, adding that the police deployment will
include officers from the full range of the police special and regular patrol
units, including the anti-terror and direct action units.
called the event “tremendously significant and important in terms of security
measures that will be implemented,” adding that police from the Jerusalem,
Central and Judea and Samaria Districts will coordinate the security by way of a
central command center that National Police Commissioner Yochanan Danino will
oversee at national police headquarters in Jerusalem.
Commuters can expect massive delays and road
closures during the visit, but Rosenfeld said national transportation police
will post traffic updates on the police Facebook page and police website
aroundthe- clock during the president’s stay here.
On March 20 police and
the Shin Bet will secure the event welcoming Obama at Ben-Gurion International
Airport, after which his convoy will make its way to Jerusalem. On the second
day he will visit Ramallah and the Palestinian territories, at which point
Obama’s security detail, the IDF and the PA will assume
On the final day, Obama will make his way back from
Jerusalem to Tel Aviv, and anyone on the roads in central Israel on the 22nd
should expect serious gridlock.
During a meeting held Sunday night to
discuss the preparations for Obama’s visit, Danino called Obama’s visit “a
national mission that will be led by the Israel Police.
“The level of
coordination between the different bodies – police, Shin Bet, IDF, rescue
services, government offices and others – must be carried out
Danino added that the lion’s share of the mission will
involve securing Jerusalem, saying “daily life in Jerusalem will be disrupted
and it is up to us to do all that we can in order to reduce this disruption as
much as possible.”