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Tuesday, November 08, 2005

A huge and significant legal action has commenced in Britain. More than 5000 police officers, traumatised by three decades of sectarian conflict in Northern Ireland, have taken their employer to court on Monday in a landmark case that could cost the British government 150 million pounds ($358 million).

As Australia enters a period of extended counter-terrorism measures and on the day when police raids in Sydney and Melbourne - 400 police have been said to be involved in Sydney alone - one has to ask what protection and training has been given to state police forces as the state Premiers have committed themselves to support in so many structural ways to the Federal Government's anti-terrorism legislation.

Police arrested eight people in NSW after executing warrants in Lakemba, Belmore, Wiley Park, Greenacre, Illawong, Punchbowl, Hoxton Park, Condell Park, Ingleburn, Belfield, Bankstown and Kemps Creek. The nine from Victoria were arrested during raids in Dallas, Hoppers Crossing, Fawkner, Preston, Haberfield, Coberg, Yarraville, Meadow Heights, Hadfield and Mount Druitt.