UPDATE 2-Activists breach security perimeter during G8 protest

Mon Jun 17, 2013 5:48pm EDT
 
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By Cathal McNaughton and Maurice Neill

ENNISKILLEN, Northern Ireland, (Reuters) - Several dozen activists briefly breached a metal security barrier surrounding the G8 summit venue in Northern Ireland on Monday, but withdrew when police threatened to arrest them.

The protesters broke away from an otherwise peaceful rally of around 1,000 environmentalists and rights activists near the golf resort where British Prime Minister David Cameron is hosting world leaders including U.S. President Barack Obama.

They climbed over barbed wire about two miles (3 km) from the resort and ran into a field waving banners and flags, but when dozens of police, some with dogs and plastic shields, blocked their path to the resort, they withdrew and dispersed.

Police are mounting one of the largest security operations ever seen in Northern Ireland, with 7,000 police officers and hundreds of armoured jeeps deployed, but they kept a low profile until activists climbed over the fence.

Police said a second barrier closer to the hotel was not breached and no one was arrested.

"I don't think it is productive but I do understand people's anger at the G8," said Daniel Waldron, one of the march organisers. "The march was overwhelmingly peaceful and positive."

The main march was much smaller than protests seen at other recent G8 meetings, which organisers put down to the remote location of the Lough Erne resort and the scale of the security operation.   Continued...