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Last Updated: Tuesday, 26 July 2005, 16:17 GMT 17:17 UK
NY mayor apologises for bus raid
By Laura Trevelyan
BBC News, New York

Man wears a backpack inside Cortlandt Street subway station
New York's mayor has approved random searches in the subway
The mayor of New York has apologised to five British tourists who were removed from a bus by police and forced to kneel on the pavement.

Michael Bloomberg said the men represented no threat whatsoever.

The men, who are all members of the Sikh religion, were on a tourist bus on Sunday when a worker became suspicious.

Security in the city has been increased since the London bombings and residents have been urged to report anything out of the ordinary to the police.

'No hard feelings'

The double decker bus was evacuated in Sunday's incident.

Armed police handcuffed the men with their arms behind their backs and ordered them to kneel on the pavement by Times Square.

However, the police later decided they represented no threat and released them.

Mayor Bloomberg warned the police to use common sense and avoid pigeon-holing people such as South Asian-looking Britons.

However, the mayor defended the police's show of force, saying they did not have any option based on what the bus tour operator had reported to them.

One of the five men from Birmingham told the New York Daily News there were no hard feelings. He said the incident had not ruined the men's trip.




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