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Stories Stories Politics Water cannons arrive in London for potential Met deployment

Water cannons arrive in London for potential Met deployment Featured

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Written by Maricel Rubia     July 10, 2014    
 
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Water cannons have arrived in the UK after being procured by London’s Metropolitan Police for the first time. The three second-hand units were sold to the UK by the German Federal Police, despite a lack of government permission for their use.

London Mayor Boris Johnson spent more than US$370,000 (£218,000) on the water cannons, without waiting for the central government's approval. German police confirmed to the Guardian that the water cannons have now arrived in the UK.

Water cannons in UK

Home Secretary Theresa May has yet to give the units the green light.

It is estimated that it will take several weeks before the machines are ready to be used.

Johnson's administration stated that the water cannons can be resold if their use is not approved.

"The impact of a negative decision from the home secretary can be mitigated by maintaining the option to resell the cannon. There is a proven demand for secondhand water cannon and other European forces have expressed an interest in the devices that we are seeking to buy,” a document prepared by Johnson's administration says, as quoted by the Guardian.

Johnson stated in the past that he wanted the water cannons to be ready in time for summer, when he anticipated protests to be at their peak.

Jenny Jones, a Green party member of the London Assembly, told London news and scrutiny site Mayor Watch that “the arrival of water cannon on the mainland UK for use on London’s streets is a depressing day for policing by consent.”

“The Mayor’s desire to give the Met Police this weapon has meant he has ignored the Assembly’s investigation on this issue, his own consultation where 98 percent of Londoners said they didn’t want them, and ignored members of his own team who have concerns,” Jones added.

“Water cannon have no place on our streets and I hope the Home Secretary sends them back.”

The cannons have previously only been used in Northern Ireland.

At the end of June it emerged that the Metropolitan Police were considering putting ultraviolet “SmartWater” in the water cannons in order to stain the clothes of protesters and make them easily identifiable.

“[Some PCCs] recognize that there is a case for their utility, although they would not want to see them being used,” Stephen Greenhalgh, deputy mayor for policing and crime, told members of the London Assembly, Buzzfeed reported.

“I’ve equally had other PCCs who are vehemently in favour of it and suggesting putting SmartWater into the water cannons so they can identify people. There’s a range of views.”

Read full article: Water cannons arrive in London for potential Met deployment

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London, United Kingdom

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Contributor's Comment
They are mighty machines , but they are driven by people and for it to do its job the driver has to see where he is going ,one plastic bag with paint in it with obscure the drivers vision to the point where the vehicle becomes useless ! as a vehicle used in riots it will of course be equipped with back up cameras but then if the lens is covered in paint that will be redundant as well !
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Average user rating from: 1 user(s)

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I am shocked that the mayor of London sees the need for such devices. The money used to buy the water cannons could of gone back into the British economy, instead the choice was made to buy from a German company, this is so sad. If the need has arisen or it is believed it may arise for such a contraptions then at least buy British goods.
I do hope parliament realise that using these on the streets of London or in any city is just going to create more problems and more than likely the rioters will just become more determined and destructive against the state.
Overall rating 
 
8.6
Cogency 
 
9.0
Credibility 
 
9.0
Accuracy 
 
9.5
Readability 
 
9.0
Perspicacity 
 
7.5
Objectivity 
 
7.5
Reviewed by Newsman July 10, 2014
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (1)

Shocking use of public money

I am shocked that the mayor of London sees the need for such devices. The money used to buy the water cannons could of gone back into the British economy, instead the choice was made to buy from a German company, this is so sad. If the need has arisen or it is believed it may arise for such a contraptions then at least buy British goods.
I do hope parliament realise that using these on the streets of London or in any city is just going to create more problems and more than likely the rioters will just become more determined and destructive against the state.

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