Hundreds march through Leicester amid violent clashes between Hindus and Muslims
LEICESTER (United Kingdom): A group of masked men drove through Leicester and one was seen armed with a 2x4ft piece of wood amid violent clashes between Hindus and Muslims, media reported.
Fifteen people were arrested in a police operation in east Leicester ‘to deter further unrest’ on Sunday evening after another night of violence, which has continued to plague the city for the past few weeks, the Daily Mail reported .
Footage has emerged showing the tensions between the two groups with mass marches showing hundreds of people encroaching on Green Lane Road – with very few police in sight to control the situation, according to the report.
Many officers were deployed to London for the Queen’s funeral on Monday – but the unfolding chaos in Leicester has led chiefs to redirect them to the East Midlands to be on hand to deal with any further potential unrest in Leicester.
Temporary Chief Constable Rob Nixon told LeicestershireLive that local officers have already been deployed to help cover Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral – which is expected to lead to a million people heading to London to pay their respects to the late monarch .
However, a review was then carried out after violence and unrest broke out again in east Leicester on Saturday night.
Some Leicestershire officers were recalled from the capital as a result, and additional officers were recruited from other forces to help.
Leicestershire Police had a ‘large presence on Belgrave Road’ on Sunday afternoon as a crowd gathered for an unauthorized protest.
Large numbers of people wearing face masks then tried to walk down the city’s Golden Mile, but the road was closed and the group was quickly dispersed, the Daily Mail reported.
Nixon said Sunday evening there would continue to be a heavy police presence on city streets.
He said: “This continues to be a rapidly evolving situation linked to a large scale policing operation. We are still using stop and search powers and any outbreak of disorder will be dealt with positively. I reiterate my call for calm.”
There were ugly scenes in the city’s east end on Sunday evening, which began after police received reports of an unauthorized protest involving up to 200 people marching towards Highfields.
All available local officers were immediately sent to the scene to attempt to engage with the crowd, while additional officers were called in. But the demonstrators continued their march before the arrival of additional officers.
An opposing group then gathered. Police issued a dispersal order, but several more incidents of violence and disorder then broke out in the east of the city, the Daily Mail reported.
Footage has since emerged showing baton-wielding police yelling at people to come back as bottles were thrown, narrowly missing officers.
Video of fights breaking out in the streets surfaced on Sunday with police separating the two groups – just hours after two arrests when unrest broke out at an unscheduled protest on Saturday evening and in the early hours of Sunday morning, Daily reported Mail.
The unrest in the city came after a period of unrest between the Hindi and Islamic communities in Leicester.
The violence first erupted after the India v Pakistan cricket match on August 28, which led to a number of incidents in the days that followed. However, the situation seemed to calm down until yesterday evening.