33rd Asean Summit

5,000 police officers to ensure security during summit

Security personnel setting up X-ray machines and walk-through metal detectors near Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre, the summit venue, yesterday. The area around the venue has been declared an enhanced-security special
Security personnel setting up X-ray machines and walk-through metal detectors near Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre, the summit venue, yesterday. The area around the venue has been declared an enhanced-security special event area and will see strict security checks and measures.ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI
Left: Police officers checking out the Marina coastal area ahead of the summit. Right: Marina Reservoir patrol boats will ply the waters around the Marina Barrage, Singapore River and Kallang Basin during the summit.
Police officers checking out the Marina coastal area ahead of the summit. ST PHOTO: TIMOTHY DAVID
Left: Police officers checking out the Marina coastal area ahead of the summit. Right: Marina Reservoir patrol boats will ply the waters around the Marina Barrage, Singapore River and Kallang Basin during the summit.
Marina Reservoir patrol boats will ply the waters around the Marina Barrage, Singapore River and Kallang Basin during the summit.ST PHOTO: TIMOTHY DAVID

They will be backed by SAF and other agencies in protecting leaders and their delegations

The Singapore Police Force (SPF) is deploying 5,000 officers to provide land and sea security for the five-day Asean Summit that began yesterday.

The 33rd Asean Summit and related meetings are taking place at the Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre, and SPF director of operations How Kwang Hwee said security arrangements required a multi-agency effort.

"The police are in charge of security, and we are supported by other security agencies from the Home Team departments, the Singapore Armed Forces and the auxiliary police force," said Senior Assistant Commissioner How.

The summit will be hosting leaders and their delegations from around the world, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is visiting Singapore for the first time.

The area around the summit venue has been declared an enhanced-security special event area and will see strict security checks and measures. Across the island, security will also be stepped up, especially in places with high foot traffic.

The commander of Central Police Division, Deputy Assistant Commissioner (DAC) Gregory Tan - who is in charge of security for the summit venue - said the deployment is unique as it takes place in the middle of the city.

"Every deployment is different - it's based on the terrain, the agenda and the attendees," he said. "So we had... to ensure security is up to standard and we are not taking unnecessary risks, but at the same time make sure people can go about their daily activities and business flow within the Central Business District is not disrupted."

Several roads - including parts of Temasek Boulevard and Temasek Avenue, and lanes on Raffles Avenue, Raffles Boulevard and Nicoll Highway - were being closed progressively from yesterday and will remain shut until Friday to facilitate security arrangements.

 
 
 
 

DAC Tan said security preparations also involved working closely with Suntec Singapore.

Mr Daniel Ang, senior director of operations at the Suntec Singapore convention centre, said: "Suntec Singapore had numerous discussions and tactical table-tops with the police and other agencies to put in place... measures for the seamless delivery and operation of the entire event."

This has resulted in tightened security measures and fire evacuation procedures, and also training and briefings for staff, he added.

Meanwhile, the Police Coast Guard (PCG) is also carrying out operations to enhance summit security. The police's Marina Reservoir patrol boats will be plying the waters around the Marina Barrage, Singapore River and Kallang Basin during the summit.

These boats are typically deployed during Parliament sittings and major events like the National Day Parade.

More than 300 cameras were installed across Singapore's coastline in July last year as part of the PCG's coastal surveillance system.

The flying of drones within the enhanced-security special event area has also been outlawed during the summit period.

Offenders can be arrested, fined up to $20,000 and jailed for up to a year.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 12, 2018, with the headline '5,000 police officers to ensure security during summit'. Print Edition | Subscribe