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Northern Ireland's G-8 Summit To Be Monitored By Surveillance Drones

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NORTHERN IRELAND POLICE DRONES G8 SUMMIT
Maintenence personel check a Predator drone operated by U.S. Office of Air and Marine (OAM), before its surveillance flight near the Mexican border on March 7, 2013 from Fort Huachuca in Sierra Vista, Arizona. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images) | Getty Images
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DUBLIN -- A Northern Ireland police commander says 8,000 officers and three surveillance drones will protect visiting dignitaries and monitor protests during the G-8 summit in June.

The annual meeting of leaders from the United States, Britain, Russia, Japan, Germany, France, Italy and Canada is expected to inspire left-wing demonstrations in Northern Ireland and the neighboring Republic of Ireland. Irish Republican Army splinter groups also could mount attacks.

On Thursday, Assistant Chief Constable Alistair Finlay told a Catholic-Protestant board that oversees police operations his force would deploy 4,500 officers and 3,500 more would come from Britain.

The board approved the purchase of three surveillance drones for the event. Finlay said the G-8 was the biggest high-security event ever mounted in Northern Ireland.

It happens June 17-18 at a lakeside resort near Enniskillen.

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