John Rees, Hackney resident and political activist interviewed by Russia Today about the causes of the riots and the government’s response.

“This isn’t something that can simply be batoned off the streets with water cannon and plastic bullets. It isn’t something that can be banned, it isn’t something that we’ll get rid of by imposing draconian prison sentences…If that happens, you can come back to the Pembury Estate [the main site of the riots in London] in a month or two months, or six months, or a year, and absolutely nothing will have changed, and therefore the fundamental causes of [this week’s] disturbances will remain.”

“When you know there’ve been 300 deaths in police custody over less than a decade, you can see why people do not trust the police.”

“Giving the police more powers, as even the police have recognized, to be fair, won’t solve the problem,”