James O'Neill

Mack Rosenberg/WCBS 880

Massive Security Operation For UN General Assembly

September 20, 2018 - 5:17 pm

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- The U.N. General Assemly is underway and security is tighter than ever.

The 73rd session started Tuesday and runs through Oct. 1.

There will be a massive security operation underway during the height of the General Assembly next week.

"There are many ways we'll be keeping people safe and as always there will be much the public will see and much the public won't see," NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill said. "During these couple of weeks like everyday of the year, we sit side by side with our local, state and federal partners and we monitor and assess the threat stream 24 hours a day. In fact some of that work during UNGA goes right on here in this room."

And that room is the NYPD Joint Operations Center where O'Neill says there are currently "no direct concerns about terrorism for UNGA specifically or New York City in general."

To prevent any of those threats, the NYPD is deploying 230 pieces of concrete block, 96 jersey barriers, and seven surface vehicle barriers at potentially sensitive locations.

With 90 percent of the world's leaders, including President Donald Trump who will give a speech on Monday, in one place O'Neill said there will be nearly 200 motorcades moving around, street closures and driving restrictions in place.

"This is a Herculean task for othe NYPD," said NYPD Chief of Intelligence Tom Galati.

LIST: UN General Assembly Street Closures

The U.N. General Assembly is declared a national special security event, which means the Secret Service is the lead law enforcement agency. The FBI is also involved.

If you live in Midtown East, the Department of Transportation has added six gridlock alert days for the General Assembly, meaning public transportation or riding a bike may be your best bet to get around.