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The BBC's Kate Adie
"An hour of scuffles and confrontation ensued"
 real 28k

Tuesday, 30 November, 1999, 23:48 GMT
Riot police clash with demonstrators
Demonstrators attacked a police van

Riot police have clashed with anti-capitalist demonstrators hurling bottles, cans and sticks in central London.

A transport police van was overturned and set on fire during the violence near Euston railway station.

The van was set alight by demonstrators
Scotland Yard said 38 people had been arrested during clashes with police, but order was eventually restored.

Many of them would face public order-related charges, she said.

Seven people were injured including one police officer, who suffered head, neck and back injuries, said the spokeswoman.

The six civilian casualties were taken to University College Hospital in central London, where they were treated for minor injuries, she said.

The rioting broke out at approximately 1900 GMT on Tuesday when between 100 and 150 people, some wearing masks, broke away from a rally at Euston and surged towards police.

Missiles were thrown as police pushed the demonstrators back and there were some scuffles.

The rioters were part of a protest against global capitalism organised to coincide with a demonstration outside a meeting of the World Trade Organisation in Seattle.

The American protest included a series of violent outbursts, with police using red pepper spray as thousands of activists took to the streets.

In London, a spokeswoman for Scotland Yard said officers at Euston had come under "unprovoked attack from a violent group of approximately 100 demonstrators throwing missiles at them".

The violence broke out after approximately 1,000 people gathered outside Euston station for the rally.

Several people were injured in the violence
A sizeable police presence blocked their way into the rail terminal and attempted to keep the demonstrators within a controlled area at the station.

But some protesters tried to break through the police lines into Euston Road.

The situation had been brought under control by 2100 GMT, though police snatch squads later surged in to arrest people as trouble flared again.

The trouble followed a day of peaceful protests in London.

Before the violence broke out, the only person arrested was someone thought to have also been involved in the June 18 Carnival Against Capitalism, when damage of more than 1m was caused in London's financial district.

Peaceful demonstrations were held at Trafalgar Square and Downing Street and a brief sit-down protest was held in Oxford Street.

The violence followed a day of peaceful protests
Protesters had been urged to converge on Euston between 1700 GMT and 1900 GMT as part of a global day of action against the 135-nation World Trade Organisation.

The UK demonstrators targeted railway stations to protest over rail safety and the profits of Railtrack - which has its headquarters at Euston.

Roads around the station were sealed off and the rail terminal was closed for a while when the trouble broke out.

A Scotland Yard spokeswoman said a decision to close Euston station had been taken "to protect the safety of the public".

Approximately 150 demonstrators were still surrounded by police at the station by 2100 GMT, with officers taking the names, addresses and photographs of those penned in.

A further 100 were close by in Euston Road.

Scotland Yard condemned the violence, but stressed that only a minority of protesters caused the riot.

Commander Judy Davison of the City of London Police, those who started the trouble had been "bent on violence before they got here".

Commander Davison held up a spanner which she said was one of the missiles thrown at officers during the riot.

But demonstrators blamed the trouble on what they said was a high police presence
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See also:
01 Dec 99 |  UK
From carnival to chaos
28 Jul 99 |  UK
Police to admit riot failings
21 Jun 99 |  UK Politics
City violence premeditated - Straw
19 Jun 99 |  UK
Police probe City riot
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Debt activists target City
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Grunge versus greed
19 Jun 99 |  UK
Police probe 'planned violence' in City riot
30 Nov 99 |  UK Politics
Free trade will boost Third World - UK

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