On 25 August, over 180 innocent African children were detained, searched and held in custody by police force officers armed with machine guns. This is the story the British media tried to hide.

On BBC1, at around 18:15, 25 August 2008, a BBC news reporter falsely claimed;

“A police operation is underway in south London tonight after a group of more than 100 youth started attacking officers. Police believe the group were on their way to the Notting Hill Carnival that has already seen 120 arrests”.

With this false announcement the BBC deliberately sought to protect an aggressive police operation involving London transport and the other media organisations that conspired to deceive the public. With the help of eyewitnesses and testimony given on the community websites and radio stations such as Afiwestation.com (Galaxy FM) Ligali has been able to piece together some of the truth on what happened that day.

Officers of the Metropolitan Police force boarded several buses in the Oval area of south London to remove and take into custody any young African who they determined fitted their distributed profile of looking likely to be a criminal. The oppressive police operation which started around 2pm on Bank Holiday Monday continued late into the evening leading to many innocent passerby’s being handcuffed, searched and detained on the basis of their ethnicity.

The area was sealed off by hundreds of police who set up a cordon around the area and used the pretext of “policing” in order to search and fingerprint every young African in the area.

Children were dropped to the floor, others held up against walls as they were searched and forcibly detained for several hours despite having committed no crime. A large mass of concerned parents and friends were forced to wait outside the cordon which was patrolled by officers with machine guns. Many parents were involved in heated discussions with police seeking to find out why and where their children were being held in custody. Of the almost two hundreds children taken into custody, seven were arrested for public order offences in response to the heavy handed tactics of the police. It is reported of that seven, some were in possession of pointed (pens, etc) or bladed items.

Facist police force attacks innocent children

The Met force claimed young Africans have historically been involved in disorder and that had they not been held until the “opportunity” to commit a breach of the peace has passed they would have committed acts of disorder at the Notting Carnival putting public safety at risk". The police did not comment on whether they see young Africans as members of the public equally deserving of protection from racist, violent and legally armed street gangs. Tarique Ghaffur the most senior non european officer in the Metropolitan force has revealed he has received death threats following claims of discrimination against the Metropolitan police force commissioner Ian Blair and other senior officers. In an article which made front page news of the observer newspaper Ghaffur reveals the threats were made by serving Metropolitan Police officers.

A resident who observed what happened in Oval commented in the local paper revealing;

“the action itself was bruisingly heavy - armed police, dogs, battons. I live there. I saw it. This wasn’t stop and search, it was public detention of children for several hours. There were scarcely any arrests or weapons found. A lot of alienation and little to show for it.”

Organisers from London Notting Hill Carnival Ltd (LNHCL) who refused to implement community calls for three minutes silence for the original African Caribbean cultural vision of Claudia Jones and our Ancestors who were victims of racism through the Maafa were indifferent to the plight of the young people.

Speaking on the issue LNHCL spokesperson Michael Williams said: "More than a million people had a great time”.

Police force officers were later involved in fighting with up to 40 people in a separate incident in Ladbroke Grove. Many officers were hit with bottles and Police say one officer suffered facial injuries during the skirmish.

Ligali | Crime and Justice | African children held hostage by armed police in Oval