Pictures: Far-Left Protest Turns Ugly At Tory Conference

Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

MANCHESTER, United Kingdom – A large left-wing protest turned violent this afternoon as a variety of far-left groups demonstrated against the Conservative Party in Manchester.

Between 70,000 and 120,000 people marched through the city centre (estimates vary), with reports of delegates and journalists being assaulted and multiple arrests made.

In one widely-tweeted incident, Huffington Post reporter Owen Bennett was spat at by a protestor who seemed to take pride in the fact he had intimidated a member of the press.

A fight then ensued, with protestors gathering around to chant “Tory scum, Tory scum”, and claiming that Bennett deserved it as he was a journalist – even for a publication that is not renowned for taking a right-wing stance.

Another young delegate was hit with by egg as he arrived at the conference centre, although seemed to laugh it off.

(Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

(Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Greater Manchester Police reported that two people have been arrested, one on suspicion of assault outside Manchester’s Radisson Hotel and the other on suspicion of drunk and disorderly conduct. It is not yet known whether the victim of the alleged assault is a conference delegate.

The violence comes after Jeremy Corbyn, the new hardline Labour Party leader, called for a “kinder politics” in his conference speech last week. He told followers he wanted an end to “personal abuse”, telling them to “treat people with respect”.

“Cut out the personal abuse, cut out the cyber-bullying and especially the misogynistic abuse online and let’s get on with bringing real values back into politics”, he said.

Delegates at the Conservative Party Conference were warned by email not to show their conference passes in public outside of the venue. This was widely interpreted as a sign party chiefs were worried about the threat to personal safety the protestors posed. Despite this, numerous members could be seen openly flaunting their passes as the protestors gathered.

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