Students force way into British PM's party HQ in demo
University students demonstrating against the British government's plans to triple tuition fees forced their way into the headquarters of Prime Minister David Cameron's party on Wednesday.
Television pictures showed students, some stripped to the waist and with scarves wrapped around the lower part of their faces, in the lobby of Millbank, a 1960s office building near the Houses of Parliament that houses the Conservative Party.
Demonstrators had smashed windows at the entrance to the building and set fire to a pile of placards outside the office block.
Hundreds of workers in the building were evacuated after a fire alarm went off.
The students were part of a 20,000-strong march through London in protest at the proposals of the coalition government of the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats which came to power in May.
The move to raise fees directly contradicts a pre-election promise made by the Liberal Democrats.
Students from towns and cities across Britain had travelled to London in coaches, with big university cities including Liverpool, Newcastle and Birmingham well represented.
Aaron Porter, president of the National Union of Students (NUS), warned the Liberal Democrats of Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg they would lose the support of a generation of young people if they continued to back the tuition fee hike.
"MPs must now think twice before going ahead with this outrageous policy," he said.
© 2010 AFP