Tuesday, 29 March 2011

London's biggest protest since Iraq war in 2003

LONDON (AP) — More than 250,000 people took to London's streets to protest the toughest spending cuts since World War II — one of the largest demonstrations since the Iraq war — as riot police clashed with a small groups. More than 200 people were arrested.

Although most of Saturday's demonstration was peaceful, clashes continued into the night as dozens of protesters pelted officers with bottles and amonia-filled lightbulbs. Groups set several fires and smashed shop windows near tourist landmarks such as Trafalgar Square.

Teachers, nurses, firefighters, public sector workers, students, pensioners and campaign groups all took part in Saturday's mass demonstration.

"They shouldn't be taking money from public services. What have we done to deserve this?" said Alison Foster, a 53-year-old school teacher. "Yes, they are making vicious cuts. That's why I'm marching, to let them know this is wrong."

Britain is facing 80 billion pounds ($130 billion) of public spending cuts from Prime Minister David Cameron's coalition government as it struggles to slash the country's deficit. The government has already raised sales tax, but Britons are bracing for big cuts to public spending that are expected next month.

Read more in the Associated Press

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