Protesters attack royal pair's car

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A security hut is set ablaze in Parliament Square, Westminster, during violence anti-tuition fees protests

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall were “unharmed” when the car they were travelling in was attacked by protesters, a Clarence House spokeswoman said.

Charles and Camilla were travelling to the Royal Variety Performance in central London when they were targeted by protesters demonstrating against the rise in tuition fees.

A Clarence House spokeswoman said: “We can confirm that their Royal Highnesses’ car was attacked by the protesters on the way to their engagement at the London Palladium. Both their Royal Highnesses were unharmed.”

The incident came as violence erupted among the tens of thousands of activists protesting against the fees rise.

A police officer was taken to hospital with a serious neck injury after being injured during ugly clashes in Westminster, while another was pulled from his horse as demonstrators laid siege to the Houses of Parliament.

Wooden benches in Parliament Square were set on fire, and two demonstrators were seen standing on top of the bonfire, watched by cheering protesters.

And a statue of wartime prime minister Winston Churchill was defaced as students climbed on to it and daubed graffiti such as “education for the masses”.

Elsewhere, masked youths smashed out glass panels at the Treasury building, while a window was smashed at the Supreme Court and graffiti was sprayed on the building’s door.

Protesters also set fire to the Christmas tree in Trafalgar Square.

Nine people have been arrested, six for violent disorder, two for assaulting police and one for being drunk and disorderly. Several other protesters were seen being led away with their arms being held by officers in riot gear.

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