Riot police face hail of fireworks from 200 youths

RIOT police were forced to break up a mob of 200 youths yesterday after they threw fireworks at officers.

Officers were sent to Bury Park in Luton after Asian youths attacked police. A Bedfordshire Police statement said the protesters were deterred from entering the town by a banning order approved by Home Secretary Alan Johnson last week.

The force added: "Today's disorder follows weeks of engagement and public consultation by Bedfordshire Police and Luton Borough Council in response to tensions within the community after the town was identified as a potential location for a march by right-wing supporters."

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Police sent in an extra 50 officers and six horses at 4:30pm as the violence escalated. Two people were arrested for public order offences.

Chief Superintendent Andy Frost said: "I am extremely disappointed that some members of the Asian community have used today as an opportunity to commit disorder and undo much of the excellent work that has been done by the police, council and community leaders to ensure today passed without incident.