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JFK Airport hub of UN arrivals

Brooklyn Paper
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Spanish diplomats arrive to a procession of security and dignitaries at JFK on the Kingdom of Spain aircraft.
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Loving crowd at JFK T1 arrivals tries to press the flesh of Julius Maada Wonie Bio, who was inaugurated as the fifth president of the Republic of Sierra Leone and attending UNGA.
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Sierra Leone countryman Septimus Taylol waves his country’s flag as President of the Republic of Sierra Leone Julius Maada Wonie Bio enters car for transportation to UNGA event.

JFK Airport was the hub of international diplomatic arrivals for the 73rd Session of United Nations General Assembly.

Thousands of heads of state, diplomats, staff, envoys, United Nations members, and the President of the United States always use JFK as their airport to land then motorcade to accommodations in and around Manhattan.

Some arrive on commercial flights and others have private planes that General Aviation and Sheltair service.

The Port Authority Police Department (PAPD) was the lead law enforcement agency with a mobile command center close to the transportation depot for many foreign dignitaries who arrived for the meeting. Hundreds of visible PAPD and NYPD officers were busy making the rounds, keeping their eyes out for any trouble or suspicion characters. (I myself must be suspicious for I was asked for my ID a couple of times.) The Secret Service, U.S. Customs, State Department, FBI, NY State Police and other law enforcement were scattered all over the airport in visible and not-so visible areas to anticipate any signs of a threat. Private black cars by the hundreds sat in the cellphone lot until called when a dozen or so left on a moment’s notice to pick up a dignitary for transport to the nearby Consulate or hotel to await the beginning of the opening ceremony on Tuesday Sept, 25 and ending nine days later.

President Trump also used JFK to land and spend a rare visit to his residence in Manhattan. His Osprey helicopters could be barely seen but ready for take-off in an emergency.

According to the PAPD, the preparations for this annual event begins the days after it ends. But in the meanwhile JFK was in full action mode with security and diligence to protect and prevent any interference with the arrivals and eventual departures of the world’s leaders.

Updated 4:45 pm, October 9, 2018
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