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G20: Police lay on the security as protesters say tactics too heavy

PROTESTERS were left marooned miles away from world leaders as police erected a ring of steel around the G20 summit.

Hundreds of officers surrounding the ExCeL centre in East London, ensuring the 500 protesters did not get anywhere near the site.

Police were accused of heavy-handed tactics over the two-day demonstration, which saw anarchists vandalise a branch of the Royal Bank of Scotland in central London.

By last night, 111 people had been arrested during the unprecedented security operation.

About 85 people were arrested on Wednesday after repeatedly clashing with police in the narrow streets of London's financial quarter on what protesters designated "Financial Fools Day".

By mid-afternoon yesterday, after two police raids on squats and two smaller demonstrations around the Stock Exchange and the Bank of England, the total number of arrests reached 111, police said.

An investigation has also been launched into the death on Wednesday of a man who was caught in a police cordon.

He was named yesterday as Ian Tomlinson, a 47-year-old City of London resident.

The cause of his death has still not been established, although it was suspected he had a heart attack.

Yesterday, protesters complained that they were kept too far from the G20 summit.

Lindsey German, the convenor of the Stop the War coalition, said it was unacceptable that they were left miles away from the ExCeL Centre. Trouble flared up sporadically yesterday but was quickly extinguished.

Commander Bob Broadhurst, the officer in charge of policing the G20 protest, said police were using video footage gathered on Wednesday to track down groups of violent activists.

He said the "overall mood" of the demonstrations was good, but he added: "Unfortunately small groups of protesters intent on violence mixed with the crowds of lawful demonstrators."

 
 
 

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