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Activists attack Clinton convoy

A Secret Service agent shoos away press photographers covering the attack by youth activists on the convoy of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as she leaves Malacanang Palace Wednesday. In the background is another agent armed with what appears to be an assault rifle. (photo by Bernard Testa,
The online news portal of TV5

MANILA, Philippines - (UPDATE - 3:55 p.m.) Left-wing youth activists attacked the convoy of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as she left Malacanang Palace following talks with President Benigno Aquino III Wednesday afternoon.

The activists managed to stop the convoy and briefly turn it back before they were pushed back by policemen and troops of the Presidential Security Group.

Around 50 members of the League of Filipino Students and Anakbayan ran from San Marcelino St. to the Ayala Bridge, storming past traffic policemen, and catching the convoy’s security detail by surprise.

Although policemen attempted to hold them off, the activists succeeded in reaching the convoy, hurling paint and kicking and punching the black vehicles.

Heavily armed troops of the Presidential Security Group alighted from one of Clinton’s escort vehicles to assist policemen who were moving to confiscate a US flag the protesters were carrying toward the convoy.

In the scuffle, a PSG trooper was pushed to the ground. A burly US Secret Service agent attempted to stop news photographers from taking pictures of the incident and of a black car with the license plate 1233.

As other PSG members, clad in barong tagalog, tried to arrest some of the activists, the convoy maneuvered back into the Palace grounds, entering the gates near the Department of Budget and Management at the foot of Ayala Bridge.

Truncheon-wielding police then moved in to push back the activists, some of whom were hurt on the scuffle, but none of them were arrested.