LONDON – A senior British minister was accosted on the street by angry protesters as he walked to an office in central London on Tuesday, days after the murder of one of his colleagues at a public meeting raised fears about the safety of politicians. .
In images posted on social media, Housing Minister Michael Gove is seen walking alone when protesters against the COVID 19 vaccine approach him shouting obscenities. Police officers rush to surround him.
Then the minister takes him to a nearby building.
The incident took place after Gove’s Conservative Party colleague David Amess, 69, was stabbed to death in a church on Friday in Leigh-on-Sea, east London, when he was meeting with voters from his district.
His death, the second British lawmaker to be assassinated in five years, has prompted calls for greater safety for politicians and action to address the rise in online abuse directed at them.
Police said a group of people tried to surround a member of parliament during a protest in Westminster.
“Our officers immediately arrived at the scene where they escorted him safely to a nearby building,” police said on Twitter.
No arrests were made. Gove was not immediately available for comment.
“These scenes would be unacceptable at any time, but to see them this week is absolutely appalling,” Nick Thomas-Symonds, home affairs spokesman for the opposition Labor Party, said on Twitter.
Police continue to question a 25-year-old man arrested at the scene of Amess’s murder under anti-terrorism laws, saying the murder could be related to Islamist extremism.