The new home secretary, Priti Patel, has been criticised after she said she wants criminals “to literally feel terror” once she begins her law and order reforms. Patel indicated a sharp rightward turn in the government’s approach to crime, which comes after Boris Johnson, the prime minister, announced plans to recruit 20,000 new police officers. “I fundamentally think the Conservative party is the party of law and order. Full stop,” Patel told the Daily Mail, in her first interview since Johnson appointed her home secretary. She vowed to “empower [police] to stop criminality.” “My focus now is restating our commitment to law and order and restating our commitment to the people on the frontline, the police,” Patel said. “I’ve always felt the Conservative party is the party of the police and police officers … quite frankly, with more police officers out there and greater police presence, I want [criminals] to literally feel terror at the thought of committing offences.”
Responding on Saturday, the shadow home secretary Diane Abbott said Patel’s “tough rhetoric” would not end “soaring crime. We need more officers and resources for the police to work with our communities, not to risk alienating them with draconian powers,” she said.
Read more: Damien Gayle, Guardian, https://is.gd/fG0dJl