Hong Kong official dismisses fears over visit by bin Laden ship
A senior Hong Kong official Tuesday sought to sooth concerns over an anticipated visit to the city by the US ship used to bury at sea the body of terrorist leader Osama bin Laden, dpa reported
Security Secretary Ambrose Lee told government-run radio station RTHK he "understood" the concerns over the visit to the city by the USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier expected this weekend.
The vessel was used to bury the body of bin Laden at sea after he was killed by US troops in Pakistan on May 2, and some people in Hong Kong have expressed concern that could make the city a target for terrorists.
Lee told RTHK the threat of an attack on Hong Kong was constantly monitored by police and was currently rated as only "moderate."
He said any port call had to be approved by the central Chinese government in Beijing, and that the Hong Kong government had not yet been notified of the USS Carl Vinson's proposed visit.
China's Foreign Ministry confirmed that a request had been made for the ship to make port call in Hong Kong, but has not yet said whether the visit has been approved.
US warships regularly make "rest and recreation" stops in the former British colony. The nuclear-powered submarine the USS Hampton is currently in the city for crew shore leave