Tony Blair's UCL Speech Protested By Anti-War Activists Outside University (PICTURES)

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TONY BLAIR PROTESTS
Tahira Mirza/Huffington Post UK

Anti-war protesters gathered outside the University College London (UCL) on Tuesday as former prime minister Tony Blair gave a speech to mark the opening of a new research institute.

Dozens of people grouped together mid-morning outside the university's main gates in central London, although the exact venue for Blair's speech, alongside former defence secretary John Reid and the education secretary Michael Gove, was unknown.

The former three-term prime minister was marking the opening of the Institute for Security and Resilience Studies.

tony blair protests

Protesters congregate outside UCL on Tuesday

Anti-war activists have criticised the university for inviting Blair but not advertising the location of the event, with the Stop The War Coalition's Lindsey German saying: "The secrecy surrounding tomorrow's event shows that even the organisers understand the contempt in which Tony Blair is held by many people in Britain.

"They try to hide the location of his latest warmongering effort, but they cannot hide the lies and deceit which Blair used to take us to war in Iraq.

tony blair protests

One protester stands outside UCL on Tuesday

"It is a shameful day for UCL. What genius came up with the idea that these people should be lecturing the rest of us on war and peace?"

On Monday, Labour MPs Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell submitted an Early Day Motion saying they were "appalled" at the plans for Blair to appear, calling on "UCL to reconsider its position in hosting this institution and instead protect its own academic independence".

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