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Monday, 9 September, 2002, 13:45 GMT 14:45 UK
Knife culture warning issued
Stabbing scene
There were six stabbing incidents in Glasgow
Scotland's justice minister has described as "unacceptable" the spate of stabbings in Glasgow over the weekend.

A number of unrelated incidents have left two people dead and five others in hospital.

A man is expected to appear in court on Monday in connection with one of the deaths.

Jim Wallace said: "I have spoken to Strathclyde Police this morning and what they told me was all too familiar when it comes to the ingredients of violent crime in Scotland.


Later this month, the BBC is holding a "Crime Day". Click here to find out how you can take part.


"Young men, alcohol and knives, adding up to attempted murder and murder."

Mr Wallace was addressing the three-day Towards a Safer Society conference in the city on Monday.

He told delegates: "Over this weekend Glasgow has witnessed two murders and four attempted murders. All of these attacks were with knives."


The police... have my full support in trying to end Scotland's unacceptable knife culture

Jim Wallace
Justice Minister

He said that the carrying of knives had been an "unacceptable" part of the country's culture for too long.

Mr Wallace stressed that police and the Scottish Executive were committed to tackling violent crime.

He said officers now had greater stop-and-search powers - and that the number of convictions had risen dramatically.

Carrying a knife

"The message to those who carry knives should be clear.

"If you carry a weapon then your chances of being caught are greater than ever before.

"If you think that carrying a knife offers you protection then the truth is that you much more likely to be stabbed or to stab someone else," he said.

Mr Wallace said that other ways of tackling violent crime were also being examined.

Person holding knife
Knife crime is on the increase

These included investment in campaigns to change attitudes to binge drinking and drug misuse.

"The police will continue to be proactive in tackling this issue and they will have my full support in trying to end Scotland's unacceptable knife culture," he added.

Figures released last week showed a major upsurge in convictions for knife crime.

The Scottish National Party called for new measures to tackle the problem, but ministers argued that the statistics showed a police crackdown was working.

Strathclyde Police were called to six separate incidents in Glasgow over the weekend.

Two men died and five others received hospital treatment for injuries.


How you can take part in the BBC's Crime Day

We want to hear other stories of how crime has been cracked - have you and your friends started a group or campaign to improve the quality of life on your estate or neighbourhood and succeeded in bringing down crime?

Call us on 08700 100 900 to tell us your story.

Or write to Crime Crackers, BBC Scotland, Broadcasting House, Queen Margaret Drive, Glasgow G12 8DG.

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See also:

08 Sep 02 | Scotland
06 Sep 02 | Scotland
04 Sep 02 | Scotland
22 Aug 02 | Scotland
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