More than 200 cameras targeted at Muslim suburbs of Birmingham as part of a secret counter-terrorism initiative are to be dismantled, it emerged today.‘Muslim suburbs’..?
The West Midlands police chief constable, Chris Sims, said he believed all cameras installed as part of the £3m surveillance initiative should be taken down to rebuild trust with local Muslims.What happened to ‘nothing to hide, nothing to fear’?
In a statement, Sims said: "I believe that the support and the confidence of local communities in West Midlands police is the most important thing for us in the fight against crime and terrorism.And when did the police last worry about whether a solution (technological or not) have ‘broad community support’?
"We can fight crime and the threat posed by terrorism far more effectively by working hand in hand with local people, rather than alienating them through a technological solution which does not have broad community support."
Today, a Birmingham council scrutiny committee released its own report, finding senior police officers guilty of "deliberately misleading" councillors over the purpose of the scheme.Ah, of course. It couldn’t be that councillors sat back and let it happen, right?
There have been no resignations or disciplinary action…Shocker…
No action is known to have been taken against the assistant chief constable Anil Patani, who had overall responsibility for the project.I’d guess Patani is bullet-proof. Wouldn’t you?