Store owners and residents began cleaning up Tuesday from a second night of violence on the streets of Sydney. The racial violence saw scores of youths drive through beach-side suburbs smashing windows and damaging cars. Police said they arrested 11 people in the latest flare-up of simmering ethnic tensions that also left seven people injured.
Any hopes that a race riot on Sunday would be an isolated incident were shattered after dark when car loads of youths rampaged through south-eastern Sydney chased by hundreds of police vehicles and a helicopter. And there appeared no end to the violence in sight with new telephone text messages circulating, one of which called for more fighting next weekend. One shop owner said six or seven Lebanese men broke her shop window, came in and threatened to kill her. Before flying to a summit of Asian nations in Malaysia, Prime Minister John Howard said the rioting would likely have no long-term impact on Australia's overseas reputation.
A police spokesman said the violence on Monday first broke out in Cronulla, where Sunday's riots also started and appeared to be retaliation by men of Arab or Middle Eastern descent.
On Sunday, a mob of 5,000 white men, many of them drunk, attacked men they believed were of Middle Eastern descent in retaliation for the assault a week earlier of two volunteer lifeguards, allegedly by youths of Lebanese descent, reports the AP. I.L.