As early as yesterday, Tokyo’s Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) are getting ready for the 2020 Olympics, with Japan’s capital city being awarded hosting privileges of the global quadrennial sports event just a few days ago by the International Olympic Committee. The MPD held a counterterrorism drill on Thursday just outside the proposed venue of the Olympic village to be built specifically for Tokyo 2020.
Around 50 people, including members of the MPD and private security guards, took part in the drill. The counter-terror exercise started in the Harumi district of Chuo Ward along Tokyo Bay, where the Olympic village is proposed to be built. The drill also included a commercial complex a kilometer away from the proposed site of the village. The MPD said that this complex is sure to draw both athletes, officials, and the viewing public once the Tokyo Olympics kicks off. These days, the said commercial mall draws more than 20,000 office workers during weekdays.
The drill was based on the assumption that there was an imminent bomb threat at the main gate of the commercial complex, with the MPD and security guards responding. “There has been a terror attack at an Olympic village in the past. We need to be fully prepared for the Tokyo Olympics,” Masaki Chiba, chief of the MPD’s Tsukishima police station, told the participants. The security personnel of the commercial complex started out the exercise by pretending to discover an unattended bag. A sniffer dog confirmed the bag contained explosives, which were later disposed of safely by an MPD bomb squad unit.
According to information coming from the Tokyo 2020 bid committee, the Olympic village will be home to around 17,000 people, both athletes and sports officials. The village will also have training facilities which will have to be marked and secured. On the same day as the drill, the MPD set up a liaison office to coordinate with other agencies and organizations involved in the games. The MPD will also be working closely with the National Police Agency and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government for the duration of the Tokyo summer games.
[via Jiji Press]