Police to stay on streets of British cities, says Cameron
British Prime Minister David Cameron said Thursday that a vastly increased police presence of 16,000 will remain on the streets of London "throughout the weekend" to quell the recent wave of rioting, arson and looting, DPA reported.
Speaking to an emergency session of parliament, Cameron conceded that police had initially treated the troubles "too much as a public order issue."
Police forces were vastly outnumbered by rioters at the peak of the troubles in London on Monday, when homes, businesses, buses and cars were set alight across the capital.
Insurers would pay out 200 million pounds (320 million dollars) in damages, and the government was setting up a fund of 20 million pounds to help shop owners recover from the damage done by arson and looting.
Cameron said that the "issue of street gangs" was at the heart of the problem seen on British streets.
The government would take lessons from anti-gang crime measures in the US and introduce "gang injunctions" for youngsters and adults.
Opposition leader Ed Miliband said Britain stood united against the violence.
"Whatever our differences, today we stand shoulder-to-shoulder to show unity against the violence we have seen on our streets," the Labour leader told parliament.
Police have arrested a total of 880 people in connection with the unrest in London and other cities as courts work round the clock to obtain convictions.
Heavy rain in northern Britain and a massive police clampdown in London and other cities meant that calm prevailed overnight, following five nights of rioting.
London saw its second night of relative calm. Further north, Manchester, Birmingham and Liverpool, which saw outbreaks of unrest Tuesday, were also quiet.
Meanwhile, Cameron has come under pressure to review planned drastic spending cuts to the police force under austerity plans.
In London, 371 people have so far been convicted of public order offences. The youngest of the suspects to appear in court was just 11 years old.
The city of Birmingham remained tense Thursday after three Asian men were mowed down by a car as they attempted to protect property.
But the situation in the city remained calm overnight, after the father of one of the victims, Tariq Jahan, urged people not to take revenge.
A 32-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the deaths, and a murder investigation has begun.
The violence and looting started Saturday in Tottenham in north London following the death of criminal suspect Mark Duggan during a police sting operation.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission said Tuesday that there was "no evidence" that Duggan had opened fire before he was shot.