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UK students turn violent in protest against fee hike

11-12-2010 09:02 BJT

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Thousands of students rallied in London on Wednesday, protesting government plans to triple tuition fees. But one day after staging peaceful rallies, many have turned to violence.

This is the headquarters of Britain's governing Conservative Party -- one day after protests against higher university fees turned violent.

The violence broke out during an otherwise peaceful march by thousands of students and lecturers against government plans to allow English universities to charge triple for tuition fees.

Student Protester said, "The cost of our education is going to increase. It's going to rocket through the roof, so at least it's sent them a really strong message just out there."

A demonstrator attempts to break the windows of Millbank Tower, housing the
headquarters of the Conservative Party, during a protest in London Wednesday,
Nov. 10, 2010.(AP / Dominic Lipinski)

The National Union of Students said the protest was hijacked by what it described as "anarchists."

Student Protester said, "The fact is 50,000 students came here today to protest against the coalition, and the fact that they are increasing fees, which is an absolute disgrace. Now the focus is being shifted to a minority of idiots who are outside Millbank, trashing and chucking stones and whatever else against the windows, trashing that, and that is not what the NUS is here for, that's not what the 50,000 students are here for."

The angry scenes took police by surprise, and it was several hours before the crowd was brought under control.

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