SAO PAULO – Brazil says soldiers of its elite National Force will be used to beef up security in Rio de Janeiro in July when Pope Francis attends World Youth Day.
The decision to use the National Force was published Friday in the government's official gazette.
The pope's July 22-29 visit to the world's largest Roman Catholic country will be his first foreign trip as pontiff. It includes a meeting with prisoners and a visit to a Rio hospital as well as events linked to the church's youth festival.
The 76-year-old Francis will remain mostly in Rio but will make a daylong side trip to the city of Aparacida to pray at the shrine to the Virgin Mary.
He will also visit a slum north of Rio, and deliver a speech.