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Police are stepping up patrols around the city this weekend over the 20th anniversary weekend of September 11, as the city remains a high-level terrorist target, local, state and federal officials said on Friday.
“You’ll see more people,” Gov. Kathy Hochul said at a press conference at NYPD headquarters, with Mayor Bill de Blasio, Police Commissioner Dermot Shea, US Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, former sanitation commissioner and mayoral candidate Kathryn Garcia (now Hochul’s director of state operations), and others. “You will see individuals with long arms, you will see them looking a bit militarized. But the idea is to let anyone know that you are playing with New York, there will be consequences. “
The NYPD, state police, federal law enforcement and others have identified the 20th anniversary of September 11, 2001 as a “vulnerable weekend,” Hochul said, and informed the mayor and the governor together Friday morning at the Police Department’s Joint Operations Center.
De Blasio and Shea both said there was, as of yet, “no specific and credible threat” to the city, but that New Yorkers should be assured law enforcement is on top. of any potential danger.
“I want to assert at this time, the most important thing I can say to all New Yorkers, that there are no specific and credible threats directed against New York City at this time,” Hizzoner said. “The NYPD does not monitor daily, not hourly, minute by minute, with an extraordinary intelligence gathering and counterterrorism capacity that we have developed in recent years. Because even though it’s 20 years later, we see threats all over the world directed at us. And we also see local challenges. “
The mayor said law enforcement would not only protect Ground Zero on Saturday, but “massive resources” would be deployed throughout the city as a protective and deterrent measure.
Shea did not provide specific deployment figures, but said the enhanced NYPD presence would consist of “thousands of uniformed and civilian members,” officers with long guns instead of handguns. NYPD standard, and bomb squads and bomb sniffer dogs.
“It should reassure people, not alarm them,” Shea said.
Still, the police commissioner said New Yorkers and visitors should enjoy the weekend rather than curl up in fear. He even went so far as to give his personal assurance of the safety of New Yorkers.
“I absolutely guarantee the safety of the city tomorrow,” said Shea. “Go out and enjoy New York, it’s the biggest city in the world.”
Hochul also made another not-so-subtle dig at his disgraced predecessor Andrew Cuomo during Friday’s press conference, saying New Yorkers can look forward to a renewed era of collaboration and cooperation between the city and the ‘State on public safety issues and other areas.
“We are ushering in a new era of collaboration,” said the governor. “And I think it’s going to give our common constituents, New York City and across New York State, a sense of confidence that we will spare no effort to protect the people we are committed to representing.” . “
The city will see a large number of commemorations for the twentieth anniversary of September 11. Hochul, de Blasio and President Joe Biden will attend a commemoration ceremony at Ground Zero on Saturday morning. The famous “Tribute in Light” will illuminate the New York skyline in the evening. Various small ceremonies will take place throughout the city.