search

Shin Bet to help secure Israeli athletes in London

Team will have special bodyguards for added protection

Stuart Winer is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel.

President Shimon Peres with the Israeli Olympic team on July 9. In an agreement with British authorities, Shin Bet bodyguards will travel with the team. (photo credit: Noam Moskowitz/Flash90)
President Shimon Peres with the Israeli Olympic team on July 9. In an agreement with British authorities, Shin Bet bodyguards will travel with the team. (photo credit: Noam Moskowitz/Flash90)

Shin Bet security service agents will accompany the Israeli competitors to the Olympics, but will keep a low profile so as to not embarrass the British, Maariv reported on Tuesday.

International security company G4S, which was hired by the International Olympic Committee to provide security for the Games, has come under fire recently over a failure to provide enough staff for the event. The British government drafted 3,500 police officers and soldiers to make up for the missing personnel.

Head of the Israeli delegation Efraim Zinger told Maariv, however, that everything was going according to plan.

“We have been working on this for two and a half years,” he said. “The British company is responsible for security checks, and less for our personal protection.”

A source told Maariv that although Britain declined an offer of Israeli expertise in securing the Games, an deal was struck to provide heightened security precautions for the Israeli team. In addition, Shin Bet bodyguards, who usually protect ministers and diplomatic missions, will travel with the athletes as a close-quarter, but low-key, security measure. The report didn’t mention whether the Shin Bet operatives would be armed.

read more:
comments
Never miss breaking news on Israel
Get notifications to stay updated
You're subscribed