Several people (unionists and nationalists) have told me that the real policing issue in Northern Ireland is that outside fully manned riot units (DMSUs), there is a huge numbers deficit following the exit of many of the old RUC force. It is beginning to make the papers now, at the end of yet another riotous summer.

The Daily Telegraph editorialises. Mark Simpson highlights the emotional conflict within the nationalist community. Danny Kennedy of the UUP warns Sinn Fein that boycotting the new Police Service could backfire on them.

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