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Security is tight as thousands march in student protest

Written on November 9, 2011

Organised by the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts, against higher tuition fees and “privatisation” in universities.

They are going to march to the City of London, where a protest against corporate greed has been taking place outside St Paul’s Cathedral.

Security is tight, especially in the City, with 4,000 officers on duty and plastic bullets on standby.

Some protesters have left the march to set up tents in Trafalgar Square.

Last year a wave of student protests ended in violent clashes.

Police are prepared to use plastic bullets for the first time on the British mainland if student protests erupt into violence.

Scotland Yard revealed yesterday that the baton rounds have been authorised for a student fees march in London amid fears it could be hijacked by anarchists and troublemakers.

Baton gun rounds have never been used on the British mainland, but they have been linked to deaths in Northern Ireland.
Last year, the then Met Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson was criticised for only sending out 225 officers who were overwhelmed by hordes of rampaging student protesters smashing into the Conservative Party headquarters on November 10.

And on December 9, during another student protest, Prince Charles’s limousine was besieged in the worst royal security breach in a decade.

“We are being told by a cabinet of millionaires that we will have to pay triple tuition fees,”

said campaign leader Michael Chessum.