Arrests at protest against Munich Security Conference

Other News Materials 9 February 2008 20:35 (UTC +04:00)

( dpa )- Organizers said eight people had been arrested at a demonstration Saturday in downtown Munich against the annual conference of western politicians and military commanders in the German city.

The leftist and pacifist protesters were kept well away from the city hotel hosting the Munich Security Conference, which brings together presidents, prime ministers and more than 40 foreign and defence ministers.

A police spokesman said "several" people were being held on suspicion of criminal insult, weapons offences or breaches of demonstration law. The organizers said police grabbed eight protesters half an hour after a rally outside the town hall began.

Police and protest organizers said earlier they expected about 5,000 demonstrators at the rally, to be followed by a march through the city. They would not be allowed into the cordoned-off zone within earshot of the hotel.

The Bayerischer Hof hotel has 3,700 police and 110 armed soldiers on duty protecting it. In previous years there has been violence at protests against the event.