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France Offers London Help In Riots

LONDON, Aug. 12 (UPI) — France has offered British police help in tracking down and arresting looters involved in widespread rioting in London and elsewhere, officials said.

The French Ministry of Interior offered to send police officers with extensive “expertise” in catching rioters, The Daily Telegraph reported Friday.

More than 1,500 people have been arrested so far for participating in looting and property destruction in the United Kingdom.

Two senior police officials told the Telegraph the inexperience of British authorities in controlling large crowds in urban areas let looters take advantage of police.

French officials said British police failed to enforce proper cordons to contain rioters and the officers did not have proper safety gear to protect themselves.

The French Ministry declined comment on the offer.

Thursday, former New York and Los Angeles police chief Bill Bratton also offered to help the British government track down and arrest looters and rioters.

The Telegraph said British Prime Minister David Cameron last week suggesting hiring Bratton to replace Paul Stephenson, who resigned in the Murdoch newspapers phone hacking scandal, as head of the London police but Home Secretary Theresa May rejected the idea.

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