Police Arrest 160 in London Riots

Posted August 8th, 2011 at 9:35 am (UTC-5)
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British authorities say at least 160 people were arrested in London during weekend rioting and looting sparked by a police shooting.

Around 35 police officers were injured in the violence — including three hit by a car while trying to make arrests in east London in the worst riots the city has seen in years.

The violence broke out Saturday night after police fatally shot Mark Duggan, a 29-year-old resident of London's depressed Tottenham neighborhood, under disputed circumstances. A police officer also was shot and injured in the incident. Media reports said a bullet had been found lodged in the officer's radio.

Tottenham residents began a peaceful protest Saturday demanding justice for Duggan. But the protest turned violent by Saturday evening, with protesters throwing stones at police, smashing store windows and setting fire to cars. Several buildings and a double-decker bus also were set ablaze.

Police said the violence spread to other parts of the city Sunday night and early Monday.

Some residents say the riots were also spurred by anger over the gloomy economic situation in north London, specifically high unemployment and reduced public services.

Tottenham is home to a large number of ethnic minorities and has a history of racial tensions.

In 1985, a police officer was hacked to death there when Afro-Caribbean youths in a deprived housing estate went on a rampage.

The latest riot comes as London prepares to host the 2012 Olympic Games. London Mayor Boris Johnson has sought to assure the world that the city is safe.