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From 24 to 27 May Kyiv will host the men's and women's final of the UEFA Champions League. The head of the Kyiv police, Andriy Kryshchenko told us how police will provide security these days.
Are the police ready for the arrival of so many football fans?
The Kyiv police have great experience in holding events of this magnitude. We held both Euro-2012 and Eurovision. Also, we repeatedly hosted international matches. Therefore, we know and understand what to do. Some risks will depend on teams that will arrive. I mean their fans, how aggressively they are, whether they have ultras. When we know this, we will work with law enforcement agencies of those countries. Exchange information on aggressive fans. That is, we will be ready to work with such fans. Nothing unexpected should happen. We know how to protect the stadium at such mass events, and the police have enough forces.
The police are not allowed to the stadium. How will you act in case of riots in the stands?
Only operative groups will be located in the stadiums, but this will be agreed, they will have official accreditation. And we are negotiating so that a few patrols would be inside the fence, but not in the very cup of the stadium, along with the perimeter, after checkpoints that could react. The stadium is expected to be full and I believe that policemen are needed. But this we will already coordinate with UEFA, link with their requirements.
Do we adopt the European experience in the work with the fans?
In this case, it is incorrect to say "adopt", we have long been exchanging experience with European countries in providing security for events of this magnitude. In this case, Ukraine has something to show and tell.
We have quite a close cooperation during other matches, we exchange information about the fans who create problems at the stadium, radically tuned. Who often go to stadiums not for the sake of the football action, but in order to arrange disorders. And basically, the scheme of the organization of protection of the order will be standard. This is a multi-level security system: from airports, from the arrival of teams, official delegations, organized fan groups. We know the traditional places where fans stop, when they come, where they spend their time, all this will be taken into account and there will also be security and order.
Will the police protect the players?
Teams will be accompanied, but they have their own guards. The police do not protect the players. But the police will ensure unimpeded passage.
How many policemen will be involved?
Yet it is difficult to say on the number of police officers involved, everything will depend from the teams that will reach the final, from the radicalization of their fans. But I think it will be at least 5 thousand. We invited additional forces, this is from the police, and the National Guard. One of the main focuses will be on anti-terrorist activities. We have threats, and they are real, so we pay a lot of attention to anti-terrorist activities and even more so at events of this level.
Unambiguously there will be frames, hand-held metal detectors. We will try to check people who give grounds for verification, and on approaches, and naturally, in fan zones. We will use video surveillance. In general, a lot of technical equipment will be involved. Unequivocally, the component of both the explosive and cynological service will be strengthened. In principle, the same thing we did at Eurovision.
During Eurovision, were there some mistakes that need to be considered now?
The international community highly evaluated security during Eurovision. There were no critical errors, therefore there is nothing to correct strategically. Everything will depend on the place, the radicalism of the teams' fans. Everything will be done for the most part according to standard procedures. We have the opportunity to change, strengthen or reduce our presence, increase the number of checks on the go. If necessary, we can do this painlessly for the visitors.