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Almost 2,000 police officers will ensure safety during Barcelona’s Mobile World Congress

Some 1,900 police officers, both from the Catalan Police Force (called Mossos d’Esquadra), and from the local polices of Barcelona and L'Hospitalet de Llobregat (Greater Barcelona), will ensure the safety of the 75,000 visitors expected to attend the Mobile World Congress, the main international event of the mobile-phone-related industry. This trade fair and conference takes place each year in Barcelona and the upcoming edition will run from the 24th to the 27th of February. With this safety reinforcement plan, plain-clothed police officers will be deployed in the pavilions of the Mobile World Congress, while the number of uniformed-police patrols will be increased to dissuade pickpockets. Furthermore, there will be more private security guards controlling the premises this year and a dedicated police station where attendees can report any loss or theft will be open all day long.

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21 February 2014 09:17 PM

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ACN

Barcelona (ACN).- Some 1,900 police officers, both from the Catalan Police Force (called Mossos d’Esquadra), and from the local polices of Barcelona and L'Hospitalet de Llobregat (Greater Barcelona), will ensure the safety of the 75,000 visitors expected to attend the Mobile World Congress, the main international event of the mobile-phone-related industry. This trade fair and conference takes place each year in Barcelona and the upcoming edition will run from the 24th to the 27th of February. With this safety reinforcement plan, plain-clothed police officers will be deployed in the pavilions of the Mobile World Congress, while the number of uniformed-police patrols will be increased to dissuade pickpockets. Furthermore, there will be more private security guards controlling the premises this year and a dedicated police station where attendees can report any loss or theft will be open all day long. In addition, hotels will advise on self-protection measures. Besides, public transportation will also be strengthened, starting with the number of taxis available.


As the Mobile World Congress continues its expansion, occupying Fira de Barcelona’s two main venues, located in Montjuic and L’Hospitalet de Llobregat (Greater Barcelona), for the upcoming edition, a new safety reinforcement plan was designed to enable a better coordination of all emergency services.

Collaboration between different levels of police forces and private guards

The Mossos d’Esquadra, the Catalan Police Force, will work alongside the local polices of Barcelona and L'Hospitalet de Llobregat to ensure the safety of the more than 75,000 visitors from 200 different countries who are expected to attend the event. Around 1,900 police officers will play a part in the public safety and mobility plan. They will be assisted by private security guards who will monitor the security perimeter of Fira de Barcelona’s venues. Their number has also increased this year.

In order to guarantee public safety, the plan is based on deploying both uniformed and plain- clothed officers on the premises of the Mobile World Congress and the surrounding areas. For the upcoming edition, the authorities in charge of public safety have chosen to increase the number of uniformed patrols, in order to have a dissuasive effect on pickpockets.

Strengthening the advice to visitors and exhibitors on self-protection and safety issues

The police officers will also ensure the safety of the exhibitors outside of the fair’s opening hours and they will cover central landmarks in both Barcelona city and l’Hospitalet de Llobregat (a city literally attached to Barcelona municipality).

The plan shares a common goal with Barcelona’s Hotel Gild: strengthening the advice on self-protection and safety issues provided by hotel managers to visitors and exhibitors of the fair. Special informative events were therefore scheduled on the matter while such advice can also be sent individually by the MWC organisers to all accredited exhibitors.

More public transportation and easier accreditation

This week the number of taxis but also buses and metros was increased in relevant areas. The Unit of Urban Transport, specialised in preventing thefts in public transportation, will patrol the underground facilities, wagons and buses.

Among the novelties of this year, aimed at facilitating the access to the site and reducing possible crowds upon their arrival in Barcelona, is an accreditation point at Barcelona El Prat Airport, which will use the mobile phone with an ID photo as a new basic tool for accreditation.

A Police Station will centralise reports of thefts and losses

This year’s MWC will also feature an Office of Advice to Citizens (OAC), called the Police Station, which will be located at the entrance of the Gran Vía facilities (in L’Hospitalet). Attendees, counting on the help of two translators working for Barcelona’s Tourism Office, may report any loss or theft and the station will manage lost and found objects. The Police Station will be open all day long, coinciding with the opening hours of the fair.

This year has also opted for continuity of the coordination centre (CECOR) within the fair. It is a crucial point for the coordination of the various security and emergency forces, and the major public transport operators.

Meanwhile, Barcelona Tourism Board has introduced call services within the CECOR that provide a phone number (which appears on the back of official accreditations) to exhibitors so that a multi-lingual, specialised staff can answer their questions and attend to any problems which may arise during the MWC.

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  • The Catalan Police has set up a police station within the Fira de Barcelona's L'Hospitalet venue (by G. Sánchez)

  • The Catalan Police has set up a police station within the Fira de Barcelona's L'Hospitalet venue (by G. Sánchez)