Anti-nuclear heckler disrupts British PM speech

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An anti-nuclear protestor briefly interrupted an address by British Prime Minister Gordon Brown on Monday, storming up onto a stage where he was speaking in central London.

The man, who held up a placard saying "Nukiller Power No" and shouted "we don't want nuclear power!", was bundled off the stage by a pastor at Methodist Central Hall, where Brown spoke along with his rivals for elections this week.

"He will get his chance to ask a question," Brown said, struggling to be heard amid boos from the audience aimed at the heckler.

"I'm used to worse," joked Brown, when a representative of Citizens UK, a civil society group which organised the conference, apologised for the disturbance.

"You may have been in the House of Commons sometimes," he added, to laughter from the audience, who began chanting "Gordon Brown, Gordon Brown".

Brown's bodyguards leaped up to remove the heckler, but the man was pushed away from the prime minister by Wayne Brown, a pastor at a London church affiliated to Citizens UK who was on the stage at the time.

The incident came with only three days to go until Thursday's knife-edge general election in which Brown is struggling to cling on to power in the face of polls showing opposition Conservatives in the lead.

Brown spoke at the meeting after addresses by Conservative leader David Cameron and Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg, whose party has leapfrogged Labour into second place in opinion polls during the month-long campaign.

© 2010 AFP

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