US national team to get diplomatic level security at Qatar World Cup

US Diplomatic Security Service started planning for the event two years ago
<p>The USMNT was placed into Group B in the World Cup draw. PHOTO: AFP/FILE</p>

The USMNT was placed into Group B in the World Cup draw. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

As teams start to get on planes bound for Qatar ahead of this week’s star-studded opening to the first-ever FIFA World Cup to be hosted in the Middle East, one team will be provided with stringent security.

The national team of the United States, along with American citizens and corporate partners of the World Cup, will benefit from a level of security that is normally reserved for diplomats.

The Diplomatic Security Service (DSS) of the US State Department will lead all security arrangements for the US national team. DSS personnel in Qatar will liaise, advise and provide security support.

“The DSS has decades of experience leading international security events, and we are committed to the safety of US citizens and athletes attending the FIFA World Cup in Doha, Qatar,” said Andrew Wroblewski, deputy assistant secretary and assistant director of DSS domestic operations in a statement on Monday.

DSS investigates transnational crimes and protects State Department facilities, people, and information as part of its mission to lead worldwide security and law enforcement efforts that advance US foreign policy and safeguard national security interests.

Wroblewski also chairs the International Security Event Group, a multi-agency body comprising more than 20 US agencies responsible for coordinating all US security and law enforcement planning for major overseas events such as the World Cup.

“The DSS has numerous special agents and analysts managing a Joint Operations Center at the US Embassy in Doha, a 24/7 security operation that is also supported by our interagency partners,” said Wroblewski, adding that their responsibility also extends to US citizens visiting Doha to watch matches.

He added that security planning for major sporting events such as the World Cup starts over two years in advance as it coordinates with US interagency and Qatari government law enforcement and security agencies to ensure a safe and secure event.

The US national team has been placed in Group B and play their first match against Wales on Tuesday, November 22.


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