Pablo Rodríguez / Ideal
Wednesday, 4 October 2023, 18:42
The third meeting of the European Political Community will bring together leaders from across the continent for a two-day conference starting in Granada, Spain on Thursday, 5 October.
The EPC is a gathering of European leaders that first met in Prague in 2022 after French President Emmanuel Macron pushed for a looser political forum to discuss the continent’s future after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Spain's Minister of the Interior, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, has expressed his confidence in the planning for the summit. The Minister made the statement after chairing a last security meeting on Wednesday morning, a meeting attended by representatives of the Granada City Council, Junta de Andalucía, the Government Subdelegation and commanders of the National Police, Civil Guard, Local Police of Granada and Civil Protection groups.
Marlaska praised the work carried out by all the administrations over the last few months to put the Alhambra plan, the name given to the security operation, in place for the summit. He explained the operation is based on instructions issued last March by the Secretary of State for Security with the aim of integrating differentiated deployments in the areas of intelligence, cyber-security, critical infrastructure protection, civil protection and emergencies, airspace defence and internal border controls.
The minister said that the final configuration of the mechanism will entail a strong deployment which demonstrates "Spain's capacity to guarantee full security" for thos attending. He pointed out that this is not the first time that the country has faced a challenge of this calibre, and recalled previous similar events such as the Nato summit or the G25 meeting, which were a "success".
On this occasion, 5,500 security personnel will be involved. The majority, some 3,600, will come from the National Police, while the Guardia Civil will contribute 1,400 officers. The remainder will be members of the Local Police forces of Granada and Armilla, as well as personnel from Civil Protection and 112 Andalucía.
A security ring will close off traffic around the Alhambra Palace and the Palacio de Congresos during the European summit with parking restrictions in place in advance. Vehicles and pedestrians will not be able to access the restricted areas.
This Wednesday afternoon rumours surfaced about the possible presence of the President of Ukraine, Volodymir Zelensky, at the summit. Grande-Marlaska has been consulted on this issue, although he has avoided confirming anything, stating that he is "not aware" of any attendance or absence. The minister limited himself to saying that "all possibilities are foreseen in the security plan". He ruled out that the arrival of Zelensky would imply abrupt changes in operations.
Zelensky made an appearance at the Second European Political Community (EPC) Summit in Moldova in June.
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