Mark Field suspended as minister after attacking climate change activist

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Mark Field has been suspended as a Foreign Office minister after violently grabbing a female climate change activist at a black-tie City dinner.

Field apologised for grabbing Greenpeace activist Janet Barker by the throat and physically marching her out of the room after protesters interrupted a speech by Chancellor Philip Hammond.

He claimed to have been “genuinely worried” she may have been armed. However, people visiting Mansion House, where the event was held, are routinely scanned by detectors before being allowed to enter, and the Greenpeace protesters were committed to non-violence, leaving when police were called to the scene.

In an interview with the BBC, Barker said Field should “reflect on what he did” and suggested he attend “anger management classes”, but said she did not plan to make a formal complaint to the police.

However, in the wake of a decision earlier this week to convict a man for common assault for throwing a milkshake at Nigel Farage, there has been a public outcry for Field to face similar criminal charges for physically grabbing a non-violent protester who posed him no danger.

City of London Police said they were looking into “a number of third-party reports of a possible assault”.

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