London anti-capitalism camp notches up two months

15th December 2011, Comments 0 comments

Anti-capitalist protesters celebrated two months camping outside St Paul's Cathedral in London on Thursday and vowed that they will stay into next year.

Up to 30 activists braved the wind and chilly temperatures to pose for photographers in front of the cathedral where nearly 200 tents have been pitched since October 15.

Later the demonstrators marched to the headquarters of the Lloyds banking group in the City of London financial district where they chanted slogans in a noisy but peaceful protest as police looked on.

Back at the camp, the protesters brushed off the threat of legal action from the authorities of the City of London financial district to remove the "Occupy the London Stock Exchange" demonstrators. A court hearing is due on Monday.

"There's morale and also resolve," said Mark Weaver, 31. "Everybody in this movement is very determined.

"I'd say we have a very good chance to stay until the New Year. We have a strong case, this is a peaceful camp, and we meet all the health and safety requirements."

Behind him, meals were being prepared in the kitchen tent among a small sea of multi-coloured canvas.

The protest, which begun in reaction to the Occupy Wall Street demonstration in New York, is still attracting new supporters.

Hannah, 15, who insists her family approve of her being in the camp instead of school, told AFP: "I'm sick of the way things are being run in this society. There are enough resources to feed the world twice but people are starving."

In the United States, protest camps from New York to Los Angeles have been closed down by officials wielding varying degrees of force.

But in London, the protesters have been allowed to stay until now although their presence has sharply divided top officials at the landmark cathedral, one of whom resigned over the issue.

© 2011 AFP

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