Belfast Telegraph

Security stepped up ahead of summit

Security is to be stepped up at the airport which G8 leaders will use during their summit, police said.

A senior officer warned of possible delays near Belfast International Airport, Co Antrim, ahead of the June summit at the exclusive Lough Erne golf resort in Co Fermanagh.

US president Barack Obama, Russian president Vladimir Putin and German chancellor Angela Merkel are among those expected to attend the two-day event hosted by Prime Minister David Cameron.

Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) chief superintendent Henry Irvine said: "As a number of the G8 world leaders and their delegations will enter Northern Ireland via Aldergrove and Belfast International Airport, it is essential that these sites along with the surrounding routes and land are kept secure.

"Over recent weeks we have implemented a security operation and have been steadily increasing our presence in the local area and within Belfast International Airport. As we approach 17 June this operation will intensify and the visible police presence will increase further."

Vehicle checkpoints, searches and other security-related duties will be carried out by officers and the checkpoints mean motorists may face delays, Mr Irvine said.

"Unfortunately it is impossible to predict at this stage the degree of any delay individual motorists may experience. However, we expect that the police resources deployed to the area will be such that any disruption will be kept to a minimum," he added.

"It is our aim that throughout the security operation the community, businesses and motorists should be able to go about their daily lives as normally as possible, however in order to make this happen we need people to work along with us by heeding the advice given."

He predicted potential delays for those travelling through the Antrim, Crumlin, Templepatrick, Killead or Aldergrove areas between June 14-19.

As part of the huge security operation around the high-profile event, a seven-mile stretch of Fermanagh's Lough Erne is being closed down completely across three days.

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