May 3, 2006

Germany well prepared for World Cup security: US

VIENNA (Reuters) - German security preparations for the
World Cup finals are going well, a senior U.S. Homeland
Security official said on Wednesday.

"It is the work of governments to make sure that we are
taking prudent precautions, and I have every reason to believe
that the host nation for the World Cup is doing exactly that,"
Deputy Secretary Michael Jackson told reporters.

He was speaking before talks with EU counterparts on
security cooperation in areas including terrorism and
passports, just over a month ahead of the tournament's opening
game on June 9.

Without being "unduly" concerned about security at the
event in Germany, all large public gatherings such as the World
Cup or the Super Bowl require "prudent measures," Jackson said.

Jackson's comments come days after the head of the EU's
police agency, Max-Peter Raztel, gave a thumbs-up to Germany,
saying he had no concerns and that everything was in place.

Swedish Justice Minister Thomas Bodstrom told reporters
last week that EU countries would send police officers on the
ground to help the German police. Jackson said he was
considering technical assistance and exchanges of best

"I would like to watch what they do because I can certainly
learn some good lessons," he said.

President Bush will ask German Chancellor Angela Merkel to
do more for women who may be exploited through prostitution
during the World Cup when she visits Washington on Wednesday,
U.S. Congress human rights committee chairman Christopher Smith
said earlier.