World University Games Under Terror Alert -- August 25, 2003
DAEGU, South Korea, August 25. SOUTH Korean police have stepped up security at the World University Games in Daegu after a tip that Islamic radicals were planning to launch a chemical weapons attack on the venues, according to a report on Reuters, the international news service.
More than 7,000 athletes and officials from over 170 countries are participating in the event, including 137 from the United States and 99 from Britain.
Police had heightened surveillance and stepped up checks on vehicles around venues in response to the alert, the South Korean Environment Ministry said in a news release.
"We received a tip from a governmental agency that the Universiade Games is a possible target for an Islamic terrorist attack. All our security is on high alert," an official from the National Intelligence Service told Reuters.
The Environment Ministry said an anti-terrorist squad, including a special chemical weapons team, would be in place to respond to any attack during the Games but that the extra measures were just a precaution.
"Security was a crucial issue at the 2002 (soccer) World Cup, as at any international event," chief of the University Games security division Choo Jon-ho said. "But these days we have to pay closer attention to chemical terror threats like with anthrax."
Police have restricted the access of vehicles carrying dangerous materials within five kilometers of the venues.