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Now to the story...

Govt says island riot a police matter

Extract from Australian Broadcasting Corporation - ABC Online, on 22 December 2004

Queensland's Acting Premier, Terry Mackenroth, says the Government will not interfere in the police handling of the aftermath of the Palm Island riot.

Townsville officers have been told to check with their superiors before charging any of the alleged rioters if they breach their bail conditions.

The Opposition says police should be left to perform their duties without interference from higher up.

The Opposition also says the Government should ask Queensland Police Commissioner Bob Atkinson to overturn the directive.

Mr Mackenroth says that will not happen.

"It's up to the police to take care of operational policing matters, not for politicians," he said.

"If the senior police wish to make operational decisions in a certain way, that's up to them.

"We had a whole Fitzgerald inquiry which came out with those findings."

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