Sydney: Major operation to prevent racial violence

More than 1,500 Australian police were mobilized around Sydney on Saturday in a massive security operation to try to prevent a repeat of the racial violence that hit Australia's largest city a week ago. Police seized a vehicle overnight, the first car to be taken under new powers given to police this week by the New South Wales state parliament. Officers stopped the small sedan and found swords and a dagger inside. The 17-year-old driver was charged with possessing offensive weapons. The parliament was recalled from its summer recess for an emergency session Thursday to pass laws to help police curb mob violence that erupted last Sunday at Cronulla beach in Sydney's south, where 5,000 white youths, many of them drunk, fought a series of skirmishes with police and attacked people of Arab appearance.
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