Protests have erupted in central London against the re-election of Britain’s Conservative prime minister David Cameron, with demonstrators throwing bottles, cans and smoke bombs at riot police.
Scuffles broke out when the demonstrators, blaring hooters, banging pots and chanting obscenities, confronted lines of police outside the gate leading to the prime minister’s Downing Street residence. At one point a bicycle was hurled at police.
Protesters and police face off at the gates of Downing Street during the protest
Mr Cameron, whose government has enacted tough spending cuts (AKA: Austerity) to bring down the budget deficit and promised more to come, won a second five-year term in Thursday’s election with an outright majority in parliament. Some protesters claim the police response to the rally has been heavy handed. The crowds marched through the city to claim ‘the system is broken’.
From the biased BBC:
Seventeen people have been arrested following clashes with police during an unplanned anti-austerity protest close to Downing Street, the Met police said.
Officers in riot gear clashed with a “minority” of protesters who threw objects during the rally – which came after the Tory election victory.
Four police officers and a police staff member were injured, the Met added.
A police investigation is also under way after graffiti referring to “Tory scum” was daubed on a war memorial.
The graffiti was sprayed on the Women’s War Memorial, in London’s Whitehall, which is yards from where a concert to commemorate the 70th anniversary of VE Day took place on Saturday.
A Downing Street spokesman condemned the graffiti as “a despicable display of disrespect for those who fought and died for their country”.
Singer Charlotte Church joined a rally in Cardiff, protesting against austerity cuts
Hundreds of anti-government protesters, some holding placards reading “I pledge to resist” and “Stop the cuts”, took part in the rally on Saturday, which began outside Conservative Party headquarters.
See video of some of the protest below: