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Who are the Sinister Looking Paramilitaries that Appeared in Nottingham on Tuesday?


County Council leading beyond authority.


Yesterday, during another asylum seeker's murderous rampage, a new organisation randomly appeared: dressed in maroon paramilitary uniforms, they were referred to simply as "NILO” officers, 'specially-trained firefighters', there just to 'coordinate the response'.


This was the first time the public had ever seen these maroon paramilitaries, yet the BBC only made a passing mention of them. The dozen or so men, dressed in paramilitary uniforms complete with bulletproof vests, army boots and helmets, were reportedly Inter-agency Liaison Officers (NILOs) who are specially trained to ensure police, fire, and ambulance service have all the necessary intelligence and support they need as well as knowing what each is doing.


According to Routers: 'NILOs are deployed to four types of events which are terror attacks, major incidents including those involving chemical, biological or nuclear material, “complex or protracted police-led incidents” such as a hunt for a killer, and “spontaneous and planned serious public order” such as riots.


NILO was formed in 2001 by London Fire Brigade following 9/11, with the template going national in 2005. According to their website NIRO officers are Fire and Rescue staff with specialist skills providing intelligence. According to guidance for NILOs, this includes sharing intelligence and information, improving inter-agency planning, liaison and response to the incidents, boost cooperation where each agency knows what capability other services have and reduce the risk to the public and emergency staff.

Leading beyond Authority.

However, NILO officers appear to sit above the other three emergency service personnel with their own (LFB) document stating "For specific police operations the NILO can be in a command role at the Forward Command Point (FCP) or other location. This will be pending the requirements of the incident, Ballistic Personal Protective Equipment (BPPE) or security vetting."


Security checked and access to restricted information.

The same document states that they have access to all sensitive police intelligence: "NILOs must be security checked to enable access to restricted information. They have access to information regarding a number of police-led operations and will co-ordinate the Fire and Rescue Services response should these operations be enacted.


Operational Autonomy.

The document also states the NILO officer has total autonomy on operations: 'When responding to spontaneous incidents in support of the police or other agencies, the time constraints may not allow for full discussion of proposed response strategies with a principal officer. The NILOs, on receipt of key intelligence that requires immediate action from the LFB to safeguard first responders and members of the public, are afforded operational autonomy delegated to take any actions, so far as reasonably practicable, up to a 30-minute period."


Yesterday's incident leaves a lot of unanswered questions, including; if this national organisation has been in existence for over twenty years why have we never seen or heard of them before? Why were there so many of these 'NILO' coordinators at this incident? and should County Council's (Fire Brigade paymasters) really be setting up paramilitary groups at all?


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