Tory MP congratulates minister who manhandled a climate protester

PUBLISHED: 10:31 21 June 2019 | UPDATED: 10:36 21 June 2019

Mark Field has referred himself to the cabinet office for investigation after he marched a climate protester out of a banquet. Picture: BBC

Mark Field has referred himself to the cabinet office for investigation after he marched a climate protester out of a banquet. Picture: BBC

BBC

After a foreign office minister physically removed a female climate protester from his banquet by the neck, Conservative MP Sir Peter Bottomley said he "congratulates" him.

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The comments come after Greenpeace protesters dressed in formal wear infiltrated a dinner at Mansion House, where chancellor Phillip Hammond was giving a speech to the City.

Video footage of the scene shows a woman moving past Mark Field's chair, whereupon he got up, pushed her against a pillar and marched her out of the way with his hand on the back of her neck.

Field has apologised "unreservedly" and has referred himself to the cabinet office for investigation.

The incident has prompted complaints to police.

However, Sir Bottomley told BBC Breakfast that Field was to be congratulated for his reaction.

He said: "He intervened. I congratulate him for that. I would have done the same. And although she may have been harmless, others won't be. I'll give you one example, I'm not going to repeat it again, there are people who are assaulted."

He said that one MP's case worker had been killed by an intruder, most likely referring to the 2000 killing of Andy Pennington, who worked for Liberal Democrat MP Nigel Jones.

Plymouth MP Johnny Mercer said on Twitter that people should "calm down" about Field's actions and that the MP had "panicked". "Honestly? Try being in our shoes in the current environment," he said.

Guardian political correspondent Peter Walker compared the incident to when Esther McVey's leadership launch bid was interrupted by a visibly angry Brexiteer protester.

WATCH: Esther McVey's launch event stormed by angry protester shouting 'fake Tories'

In this instance, despite shouting loudly and gesticulating, the man was not received violently by the three people who got up to face him.

McVey stayed in her chair and called out: "Give him a round of applause, ladies and gentlemen," when the man was ushered out to a slow hand clap.

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