NEW YORK (FOX 5 NY) - The chairman of the House Homeland Security committee said a security threat against Pope Francis has been thwarted. Rep. Michael McCall was asked on Sunday about the security concerns officials in New York City and at the national level have over the pope's visit in nearly two weeks. "We are monitoring very closely threats against the pope as he comes into the United States. We have thwarted one plot," said McCall.
Details were not revealed about the threats. It is also not clear during which stop the threat was placed.
Officials have acknowledged the massive security operation that is underway for the Holy Father's visit. Pope Francis arrives in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, Sept. 22. He then travels to New York City on Thursday and departs for Philadelphia on Saturday.
Mayor Bill De Blasio, NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton joined the U.S. Secret Service and several government agencies to run through a range of nightmare scenarios ahead of the visit from the pope. They are protecting the pope by preparing for the worst.
A papal visit alone would bring on the top tiers of security. But the arrival of Pope Francis next Thursday and Friday will coincide with the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly, bringing together 170 heads of state including President Obama.
Included in Pope Francis's trip is an evening prayer at St. Patrick's Cathedral, a speech at the U.N., a service at Ground Zero, a motorcade through Central Park, and mass at Madison Square Garden. The events will all be credentialed although hundreds of thousands are expected to descend on the city hoping to catch of glimpse of the leader of the Catholic Church.
The Secret Service will be leading security efforts. Air space will also be limited over parts of the city during the trip. Plenty of screening checkpoints will be in place. Officers will be visible on the streets and on boats in the rivers.
With Fox5NY.com staff