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"We have to listen to them when they talk about resources", he said after meeting with senior police officers.

Emerging from the meeting this lunchtime, Mr Javid said he'd been questioned over resources for a "surge" operation on those carrying knives.

Prime Minister Theresa May said on Wednesday she will hold a summit on how to tackle Britain's soaring knife-crime rate as she battles accusations that her government austerity policies are partly to blame. As the outgoing head of the National Police Chiefs Council said recently: "We do not have the resources to do everything that is desirable and deserving".

Jodie, 17, was with friends near a children's playground on Harold Hill, east London, when she was approached by two males and knifed in the back in a seemingly motiveless attack.

Senior officers from the Metropolitan Police, Merseyside, Greater Manchester, West Midlands, South Wales, South Yorkshire and West Yorkshire attended the meeting, as did representatives of the National Crime Agency and National Police Chiefs' Council. Two men have been charged with his murder.

He said: "Well there is [a link] because the evidence is there, and I'm staggered that the prime minister, who after all was the home secretary when the cuts to policing started, [cannot see that] the evidence is overwhelming".

Mr Chesney said Jodie was the daughter of his youngest brother Pete, adding: "We value your support and prayers at this time especially for our brother Pete, his wife Jo and Jodie's sister Lucy".

Jodie's grandmother, Debbie Chesney, wrote on Facebook: "We don't want anyone else to go through what our family is suffering right now".

In Lancashire, six people have been arrested over a gang attack at a sixth form college. "This past year I've been given more, so what I'm doing at the moment is recruiting".

Scotland's public health approach to reducing knife crime will form part of the UK Government's response to the rising toll of young victims of violence across England, Theresa May has said.

The opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn said cuts to police staffing levels were exacerbating the problem.

He told Sky News that online retailers have a role to play in stopping people young people buying knives.

Two-thirds of police forces in England and Wales recently responded to a Freedom of Information request from Channel 4's Dispatches which showed that, in those force areas, the number of teenagers recorded as having killed with a knife had risen from 26 in 2016 to 46 past year.

The issue has shot to the top of the political agenda after figures show the number of deaths from stabbings reached a record past year.

But Donna Murray-Turner, who chairs the Croydon Safer Neighbourhood Board, does not believe more police officers will solve the issue.

"I agree that there is some link between violent crime on the streets obviously and police numbers, of course there is and everybody would see that".