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Wednesday, 12 December, 2001, 15:12 GMT
Safety warning for hunt ban MSPs
Anti-hunt protesters
The fox hunting debate has aroused strong passions
A personal safety warning has been issued to six members of the Scottish Parliament who are considering the bill to ban fox hunting.

The police urged the MSPs to take security precautions after officers had talks with countryside campaigners.

The officers said they were concerned that some of the campaigners they met apparently threatened to harass six MSPs.

Fox hunt
There are about 10 hunts in Scotland

Countryside campaigners were angered when the rural development committee rejected a compensation package for those who will lose their jobs as a result of a fox hunting ban.

Six MSPs voted against the package - four Labour and two from the Scottish National Party.

Officers responsible for policing the parliament said they met a group of campaigners who had made clear their intention to disrupt parliamentary business and harass MSPs.

The police have now advised the MSPs to ensure they are accompanied at all times, that they carry a mobile phone and that they let the police know where they are.

A spokesman for campaigners said they intended to confront the MSPs but that they will act within the law.

However, he added that some campaigners would be prepared to go to jail for their cause.

See also:

26 Sep 01 | Scotland
New challenge to hunt bill
19 Sep 01 | Scotland
Vote supports hunting ban
11 Jul 01 | Scotland
Hunting bill MSP 'optimistic'
11 Jul 01 | Scotland
Hunting bill hits major setback
04 May 01 | Scotland
Hunting bill falls at first hurdle
02 May 01 | Scotland
Hunting ban bill stumbles
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