Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

AFRICA NEWS

Search of Air Algerie crash site continues

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Sarkozy, Hollande and the scooter wars

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Confusion online over Air Algérie flight

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - July 25th, 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - July 25th, 2014

Read more

REPORTERS

Halal tourism on the rise

Read more

ENCORE!

Tunisia's Carthage International Festival turns 50

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

WWI Centenary: the battle for Verdun

Read more

THE BUSINESS INTERVIEW

When big companies want to do good

Read more

  • In pictures: Debris and devastation at Air Algérie Flight AH5017 crash scene

    Read more

  • Kerry heads to Paris for new round of Gaza peace talks

    Read more

  • ‘No survivors’ from Algerian plane crash, says Hollande

    Read more

  • Paris bans new Gaza protest scheduled for Saturday

    Read more

  • Tour de France fans bring the ambience to the Pyrenees

    Read more

  • French families grieve for Algerian plane crash victims

    Read more

  • Protest against Gaza offensive turns deadly in West Bank

    Read more

  • Halal tourism on the rise

    Read more

  • LA Times wipes France off the map in air crash infographic

    Read more

  • Lithuania’s Navardauskas wins 19th stage of Tour de France

    Read more

  • French lawyer files complaint against Israel at ICC

    Read more

  • Ukraine names acting PM after Yatseniuk's shock resignation

    Read more

  • BNP to pay $80 million for defrauding Dept of Agriculture

    Read more

  • Deadly strike on UN shelter in Gaza Strip

    Read more

  • Pope meets Christian woman sentenced to death in Sudan

    Read more

Europe

Student protesters break into Conservative Party headquarters

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2010-11-10

University students forced their way into the headquarters of British Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservative Party on Wednesday to protest against plans to triple tuition fees, overwhelming security guards and wrecking the reception area.

AFP - University students forced their way into the headquarters of British Prime Minister David Cameron's party on Wednesday during a chaotic protest against the government's plans to triple tuition fees.
   
Dozens of demonstrators smashed ground-floor windows and charged into the lobby of 30 Millbank, a 1960s office building near the Houses of Parliament that houses the Conservative Party, an AFP reporter witnessed.
   
Police appeared to be overwhelmed by the numbers of students inside the building and were powerless to stop the protesters from tearing down the ceiling and wrecking the reception desks in the lobby.
   
A group of students managed to reach the roof of the six-storey building and hurled objects at police below. Outside, police tried unsuccessfully to barricade the entrance to the building on the banks of the River Thames.
   
One woman police officer was seen being led away from the scene with blood on her face. Five people were injured, a spokeswoman for the London Ambulance Service told AFP.
   
Thousands of demonstrators swarmed outside the building and at one point made a bonfire of a pile of protest placards, while hundreds of workers in the building were evacuated.
   
Tens of thousands of students were taking part in a march through London in protest at the proposals of the coalition government of the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats which came to power in May.
   
Police put the number of demonstrators at 20,000, while organisers said it was nearer to 50,000.
   
Aaron Porter, president of the National Union of Students (NUS), condemned the violence, saying it was "despicable".
   
"I absolutely condemn the actions of violence," he told BBC TV. Earlier, he said in a Twitter message: "Proud of the 50,000 students who have come to protest peacefully. Shame on those who are here to cause trouble."
   
A student from Bucks New University, who refused to be named, told AFP as he ran from the building: "It's like a raid in there.
   
"The Conservatives are asking for it. Both parties deserve it."
   
He said that at the start of the protest, the police "marched us past here and expected nothing to happen."
   
Observing the wreckage of the building's lobby, he added: "Now there's nothing they can do -- there's too many of us."
   
The move to increase tuition fees directly contradicts a pre-election promise made by the Liberal Democrats of Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, the junior coalition partners.
   
Students from towns and cities across Britain had travelled to London, with big university cities including Liverpool, Newcastle and Birmingham well represented.
   
Protesters waved placards saying: "Stop education cuts" and "9K? No way", referring to the 9,000-pound (14,500-dollar, 10,500-euro) maximum level of the annual fees.
   
One demonstrator, Bernard Goyber, a 19-year-old reading history at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London, said: "I wanted a peaceful demonstration. We wanted to take our voices through the streets.
   
"Students haven't been consulted about the rise in fees at all and universities are being savaged by the cuts.
   
"Fifty percent of students can't get jobs, most students won't be able to pay this anyway."
   
The issue of tuition fees had earlier dominated the weekly session of question and answers in parliament hosted by Clegg in the absence of Cameron, who is on a visit to China and the G20 summit in South Korea.
 

Date created : 2010-11-10

  • UNITED KINGDOM

    BBC staff begin 48-hour strike over changes to pension plan

    Read more

  • UNITED KINGDOM

    Tube workers' strike delays millions of London commuters

    Read more

  • UK

    Budget cuts mark state's retreat from public life, media say

    Read more

COMMENT(S)