Snipers have been pictured in Manchester city centre today as thousands march in protest to cuts, coinciding with the Conservative Party conference.

Armed police can be seen on the roof of the Great Northern complex in images that have been widely shared on social media.

Police have defended the decision to use the marksmen saying they are there ‘purely for observation’.

Source: Pictured: Police SNIPERS spotted on roof at peaceful anti-austerity march sparked by Tory conference – Mirror Online

There is no justification for this.

It was bad enough when Iain Duncan Smith started bringing armed bodyguards to meetings of the Commons Work and Pensions select committee.

Now police are targeting peaceful demonstrators.

The defence of the decision to put marksmen on the roofs of buildings (including that housing the Conservative Party Conference) is pitifully weak.

“Purely for observation”? Because the sights are “stronger than any pair of binoculars”?

Then why were these sights still attached to rifles?

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