HUNDREDS of protesters descended on Parliament to air their anti-capitalist beliefs outside the UK’s halls of power.
Up to 400 demonstrators - many from the Occupy movement - tried to stage their rally directly outside the gates of Parliament last night, but were pushed back on to the grass by dozens of police officers.
The protest was largely peaceful, though there were a handful of scuffles with police. Scotland Yard said 10 people were arrested for public order offences, and that no one was reported injured.
Demonstrators started congregating in Trafalgar Square at about 6pm yesterday before marching down Whitehall towards Parliament at 8pm.
Most of those who gathered were wearing Guy Fawkes masks. The protest forced MPs and parliamentary staff to leave via side entrances after officers closed the main gates.
Kree Love, 18, a student from South Kensington, said: “People have come to this protest because it is central and it is the best way to get our point across.”
Another student, 19-year-old Cian, from Ireland, said: “I just want to be part of a protest against the Government - against the cuts when they are spending billions of pounds on war.
“We all have our own individual qualms with the Government.”
Most of the protesters had left Parliament Square by midnight, the Met Police spokesman said, dispersing of their own accord.
Under the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act, which came in to force last year, the police can forcibly remove any protesters that decide to set up camp in Parliament Square.
The legislation was introduced after anti-war campaigners spent years occupying the London landmark outside Parliament.