Police chief backs Blears over Muslim searches

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Indy Politics

The Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police has backed a minister's controversial comments that Muslims should accept that they will be stopped and searched by police.

Hazel Blears, the Home Office minister, said on Tuesday that Muslims should accept as a "reality" that they would be targeted by police under the Government's anti-terror measures. Yesterday Sir Ian Blair said he supported Ms Blears, and also supported the assessment of Tony Blair that that there were "hundreds" of people in Britain plotting to commit terrorist acts.

Asked if he agreed with Ms Blears' comments, Sir Ian said: "I do actually: I think Hazel's right to say it. The terrorism regulations around stop and search do not require individual suspicion, they are much more akin to searches around an airport."

Latest figures show blacks and Asians are increasingly likely to be targeted by police. Sir Ian said the rise equated to about three more people in London being stopped every day, "not a huge rise".