Riots spread throughout England
Translated Wednesday 10 August 2011,
by Elaine Scott and reviewed by Bill Scoble
Riots, which sparked up this weekend in several multi-ethnic areas of London, continued on Monday and Tuesday night, forcing British Prime Minister, David Cameron, to cut short his holiday and to return to the capital immediately.
Violence and looting also spread to other English cities such as Birmingham (central England), Liverpool (north-west England) and Bristol in the south-west.
His cabinet announced that David Cameron, who was on holiday in Tuscany, Italy, held an emergency meeting on Tuesday with the emergency services and met with the Interior Minister and the Chief of Police.
Scotland Yard announced the deployment of 1700 extra police officers to confront the worst incidents seen in the English capital for years.
On Tuesday, Scotland Yard also added that 334 people - of which one is 11 years-old – had been arrested since the riots began on Saturday. 69 of them have been charged in relation to the incidents which arose in London and its boroughs. At least 35 police officers have been injured over the weekend.
Buildings were blazing in Croydon, Peckham and Lewisham in the south of London, whilst looters filled the streets of Hackney in the east, Clapham in the south, Camden in the north and Ealing in the west.
At “Ledbury”, a two Michelin star restaurant in Notting Hill, looters and thieves stole mobile phones and made of with cash from the till as well as the restaurant’s crockery.
Hundreds of riot control police intervened to contain rioters in Hackney, several kilometres from Stratford (east London) where the Olympic Games will take place in less than a year.
Elsewhere, West Midlands police confirmed the arrest of 87 youths who, in the centre of Birmingham, smashed shop windows and started looting. It was also indicated that a police station in Birmingham had been set on fire.
In Liverpool, the local police were also confronted by scenes of violence, notably the setting on fire of several cars. “No act of violence will be tolerated on the streets of Liverpool and we have taken fast and firm measures to respond to it”, confirmed a spokesperson for the police, Andy Ward.
In the capital, the Chief of Police, Tim Godwin, made a statement to the press: “There are major incidents in a certain number of London boroughs, many police officers have been deployed, but I am asking parents to contact their children and ask them where they are”.
The first incidents in London were triggered after a protest on Saturday evening calling for “justice” after the death of a 29-year-old man, Mark Duggan, killed in a gunfight with police in Tottenham (north London). Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, who went to Tottenham on Monday, condemned a “wave of opportunistic violence” which has “absolutely nothing to do with the death of Mark Duggan”, a father of four. An independent complaints commission has opened an inquiry into the circumstances surrounding Mark Duggan’s death. The ballistic results were expected on Tuesday.