London riots escalate to other cities in Britain (Lead)

August 9th, 2011 - 11:21 am ICT by IANS  

David Cameron London, Aug 9 (IANS) Incidents of rioting and arson, which were witnessed across London for two days, escalated to others parts of Britain on the third day.

Fires have been burning in parts of London after a third day of violence and looting on the city’s streets. Shops were looted and buildings set alight as police clashed with youths. The trouble also spread to Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester and Bristol, the BBC reported Tuesday.

At least 225 people have been arrested and 36 charged following the riots across London over the past three days, Scotland Yard said.

It added that an extra 1,700 officers had been deployed across the capital Monday night. Nine police forces from other parts of the country were assisting in providing support, as well as the City of London police and British Transport Police.

Prime Minister David Cameron cut short his holiday and flew back to Britain as London continued to witness devastating scenes of violence stretching the emergency services beyond limit on a third night of rioting in the capital, the Guardian said.

Buildings were torched, shops ransacked, and officers attacked with makeshift missiles and petrol bombs as gangs of hooded and masked youths laid waste to streets across the city.

Buildings were set on fire in Croydon, south London, one massive fire consuming the 100-year-old Reeves furniture store. The fires were so severe that approach roads into Croydon were thick with smoke leaving some residents struggling to see or breathe.

In Hackney’s Pembury Estate, which is the centre of the violence in east London, masked youths helped carry debris, bins, sticks and motorbikes, laying them across the roads to form a flaming boundary to the estate, the report further stated.

The violence first flared Saturday after a peaceful protest in Tottenham over the fatal shooting of a man by police.

The trouble spread outside London Monday evening and early Tuesday, with police in riot gear being deployed in Birmingham city centre after scores of youths rampaged through the shopping area, smashing windows and looting from shops, the BBC reported.

West Midlands Police confirmed that a police station in Holyhead Road in Handsworth, Birmingham, was on fire.

In Birmingham, police said officers arrested 100 people.

There were reports of cars being damaged in Britain’s Manchester city and of up to 200 youths with masks roaming through Toxteth in Liverpool city.

Police in Bristol said they were dealing with outbreaks of disorder involving about 150 people.

Commander Christine Jones of the Metropolitan police, said: “The Met will ensure that those responsible will face the consequences of their actions and be arrested.”

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