Britain's senior police officer has stepped into the political row over ID cards with an assertion that the new technology would be "very helpful" to his officers.

Sir Ian Blair, the Commissioner of Metropolitan Police, warned that the al-Qa'ida terrorist network was targeting Britain and said ID cards should be given "further consideration" as a means of tackling terrorists.
Labour was swift to highlight the police chief's words as evidence that ID cards were necessary. But the Tories and Liberal Democrats accused the Government of exploiting fear of terrorism to push its plans for ID cards ahead of the election.

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