Two men arrested at Buckingham Palace

2011-01-13 18:04

London - Two men, said by media to be students protesting, have been arrested trying to get into Queen Elizabeth's London residence Buckingham Palace, police said on Thursday.

The men, aged 20 and 26, were detained on Wednesday morning after they attempted to walk past officers at a check-in post at the palace but were stopped and searched, a police source told Reuters.

One of the men was believed to be carrying a bed sheet with political slogans written on it, the source added. Sky News said the men were thought to be students, protesting against the government's planned rise in university tuition fees.

The Metropolitan Police confirmed the arrests and said the men had been held on suspicion of trespassing on a protected site in contravention of the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act.

The men are still in custody.

Demonstrations by students against the fees rise at the end of last year turned violent, with one leading to the most serious riots in London for years.

During these, protesters attacked a limousine carrying Prince Charles and his wife Camilla.

One of the windows was cracked, white paint was thrown over the car, and ministers said Camilla "came into contact" with protesters, with media reporting she had been poked with a stick.

In 2004, a protester for divorced fathers' visitation rights, dressed in a Batman suit, climbed a balcony at the palace and unfurled a banner.