Quantcast
Latest Stories

London braces for mass ‘party’ for Thatcher’s death


Margaret Thatcher AFP FILE PHOTO

LONDON – Police were braced on Saturday for a mass “party” staged by opponents of Margaret Thatcher in London’s Trafalgar Square to celebrate her death.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson said the authorities were prepared for potential violence, after trouble erupted at several impromptu street celebrations following the death of the former British prime minister on Monday.

Any unrest is likely to feed concerns about security at the Iron Lady’s funeral in the capital on Wednesday, which will be attended by Queen Elizabeth II, Prime Minister David Cameron and 2,000 guests, including many political and world figures.

No formal demonstration has been organised for Saturday, but over 1,500 people have pledged on Facebook to attend a “Thatcher’s Dead” party at Trafalgar Square at 6:00 p.m. (1700 GMT).

Representatives of the coal miners who battled Thatcher in a year-long strike in 1984-5, before accepting sweeping pit closures, were planning to travel to the capital for the event alongside students and left-wing groups, The Guardian reported.

Some football fans were threatening to confront the anti-Thatcher revellers on their way home from the FA Cup semi-final between Millwall and Wigan in Wembley, north-west London, The Daily Telegraph reported.

Trafalgar Square is one of London’s biggest tourist hubs, home to the Nelson’s Column monument and the National Gallery.

A spokesman for Scotland Yard said officers had “contacted a number of individuals who have stated they intend to take part in protest on Saturday”.

London’s mayor said people were entitled to demonstrate but warned police would take a tough line on any violence.

“We live in a democracy where people are entitled to protest, they are entitled to have fun and do what they want,” Johnson told LBC radio on Friday when asked about the Trafalgar Square event.

“What they can’t do is, I think, is use the death of an elderly person to begin riot or affray or that kind of thing.”

Thatcher ‘left detailed instructions’

Police are mounting a major security operation for Wednesday’s funeral, when Thatcher’s coffin will be taken to St Paul’s Cathedral through streets lined with members of the armed forces.

The ceremony itself will be carried out in line with strict instructions left by the former premier herself, according to the Telegraph.

She requested that Cameron, as prime minister of the day, read a passage from the Bible but did not want any political eulogy, the newspaper reported. She also asked that her favourite hymns be sung.

In a reflection of her strong partnership with Ronald Reagan in fighting communism in the Cold War, the guest list includes all the surviving US presidents.

But several towering politicians from Thatcher’s era, including former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, German ex-chancellor Helmut Kohl and Reagan’s widow Nancy, are not attending due to ill health.

The guests will join members of Thatcher’s family including her 59-year-old twins, Mark and Carol, who were reunited on Friday evening for the first time since their mother’s death.

They were both out of the country when Thatcher died on Monday following a stroke at London’s Ritz hotel, aged 87.

In a statement outside her mother’s former London home on Saturday, Carol Thatcher said she was bracing for a “tough and tearful week”.

“I feel like anyone else who has just lost a second parent,” she said. Denis Thatcher, her mother’s devoted husband for 52 years, died in 2003.

Carol Thatcher hailed this week’s “magnificent” tributes from world leaders including US President Barack Obama as proof that her mother made her mark on history.

“But I know that this is going to be a tough and tearful week, even for the daughter of the Iron Lady,” she added.

Thatcher, a Conservative, was Britain’s only female prime minister and the longest serving British premier of the 20th century, holding office from 1979 to 1990. Her death has sparked fierce debate about her legacy in Britain.

Her admirers, who credit her with helping to end the Cold War and reinvigorating the British economy after decades of decline, are campaigning for a public memorial.

But left-wing opponents accuse her of pushing a ruthlessly individualistic agenda and putting millions out of work with her radical free-market reforms.


Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Britain , London , Margaret Thatcher , Politics




Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. US teacher fired over comment on black president
  2. Filipinos, Dane re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  3. Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  4. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  5. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  6. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  7. Massive infra spending set
  8. Easter crucifixions draw huge crowds
  9. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  10. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. MH370 co-pilot made mid-flight phone call – report
  7. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  8. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  9. Massive infra spending set
  10. OFW brings MERS virus to Philippines
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  5. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  6. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  7. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  8. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  9. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia
Advertisement

News

  • Flash floods hit 9 Tagum villages
  • No tsunami to hit PH after 6.9 quake jolts Solomon Islands–Phivolcs
  • Search resumes for bodies in Everest avalanche
  • 6.6-quake hits off PNG’s Bougainville – USGS
  • Bus passengers foil bombing in Sultan Kudarat
  • Sports

  • Duke’s Rodney Hood joining Jabari Parker in NBA draft
  • Phelps entered in 3 events at comeback meet
  • Boston prepares for huge wave of marathon visitors
  • Motivated LeBron James preps for postseason
  • Nadal ousted by Ferrer in Monte Carlo quarters
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Myx TV premieres Asian American ‘docu-series’
  • A nutty finale for ‘Scandal,’ TV’s craziest show
  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Business

  • Fiat-Chrysler to produce iconic Jeep in China from 2015
  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • We treasure our Sierra Madre
  • OFW from UAE tests negative for MERS-Cov–health chief
  • Multicultural flock marks Good Friday in San Francisco
  • Las Vegas ‘Pinoy Pride’ fest hails Filipino heritage
  • Marking Jesus’ journey on Good Friday
  • Marketplace
    Advertisement