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Major arms show interrupted by protests at ExCeL

But DSEI organisers insist setup remains on schedule as Stop the Arms Fair protestors try to prevent deliveries

Pictured: Stop the Arms Fair protestors abseil from a bridge to halt deliveries to ExCeL ahead of the show

More than 50 people have been arrested in conjunction with a major arms exhibition at ExCeL London this week, as protestors try and block it from taking place.

Organisers of the Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI) say setup schedules have been unaffected while at least 57 have been arrested in the lead-up to the event, on 12-15 September.

The protestors, from Stop the Arms Fair, have blocked both entrances and tried to prevent the delivery of items by forming human barricades. On Tuesday 5 September, protestors abseiled from a bridge nearby to prevent traffic getting to ExCeL.

It  isn't the first time protesters have tried to disrupt DSEI, which is organised by Clarion Events; back in 2015, a handful of people broke into ExCeL for a day of action and to try and stop the event from taking place.

A spokesperson for DSEI told meetpie: "We are aware that protests have been taking place near to the ExCeL campus in London this week - setup of DSEI is unaffected and on schedule. The Metropolitan Police are responsible for the maintenance of public order outside of ExCeL London and further questions should be directed to them.

"DSEI is the only event to cover the full spectrum of defence and security, effectively serving the air, land, naval and joint sectors. DSEI's comprehensive offering is conducive to interoperability, allowing the UK MOD to adopt a joined-up approach when it comes to procurement. Members of the Cabinet and Ministers from across the UK Government will attend DSEI, meeting British companies and underscoring the important role the defence and security sector plays in the UK. DSEI provides an effective platform for this sector, which has a turnover of over £30 billion and employs 233,400 people directly and over 145,000 indirectly."

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