Riot vans and a strong police presence were deployed in London today amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference.

Around 100 police officers were in Soho, central London, where protesters with banners were believed to be occupying a former police station in Beak Street.

The move by police came as protesters from the group Stop G8 planned a "Carnival Against Capitalism" in central London, ahead of the G8 conference in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Businesses in central London have reportedly warned staff to take precautions after similar protests in recent years led to violent clashes with police.


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Protesters are said to be occupying an abandoned police station


Police protection of landmark sites across Belfast has been tightened in advance of the conference.

Westminster City Council cabinet member for city management Ed Argar said: "Our warden teams will be working with police to manage the streets and we also have clean-up crews on standby.

"Everyone respects the right to legitimate protest and I hope this will be a day without incident.

g8 protest

Police presence was concentrated around the West End


"However, business people, shop staff and visitors have the right to go about the West End without intimidation or interference and we will do our best to ensure the centre of London runs smoothly."

There were reports on Twitter of strong police presences in the Oxford Circus and Regent Street area of central London and Golden Square, close to Beak Street.

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Workers in the area say they have been 'locked in' by the action


One designer, Jamie Rees, tweeting under@jamie_rees, reported: "Locked into work. Literally. G8 protestors outside targeting Golden Square."

Another Ed McClaran, @edmcclaran, tweeted: "Big G8 protest outside outside our offices today. People chaining themselves to railings. Why they are in the West End and not the City, I don't know."

The leaders of the world's eight wealthiest countries, including Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, are due to meet at the luxury Lough Erne resort in Co Fermanagh for the two-day conference next week.

US President Barack Obama is to visit parts of Belfast ahead of the summit.

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  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Police are seen on Beak Street as a man is searched as arrests are reportedly made as activists occupy a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: A policeman escorts a man in handcuffs away from the scene where activists occupied a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Protesters are seen on Golden Square surrounded by police after activists occupied a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: A man is questioned by police on Piccadilly after activists occupied a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Police are seen after activists occupied a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: A activist is detained by police and put onto a bus on Golden Square after they occupied a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: An protester shouts as police detain activists after they occupied a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Police line the street on Piccadilly after activists occupied a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

  • BRITAIN-G8-POLITICS-PROTEST

    Protesters leave the area with their belongings following their eviction by riot police from a building thought to be an anti-capitalist squat in central London on June 11, 2013, hours after more than 100 riot police surrounded the premises ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland. The police operation came as around 150 protesters paraded through central London, banging drums in a 'Carnival Against Capitalism' organised by the group Stop G8. AFP PHOTO/LEON NEAL (Photo credit should read LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: An activist is detained by police on Golden Square after they occupied a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

  • BRITAIN-G8-POLITICS-PROTEST

    Activists leave the area with their belongings following their eviction by riot police from a building thought to be an anti-capitalist squat in central London on June 11, 2013, hours after more than 100 riot police surrounded the premises ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland. The police operation came as around 150 protesters paraded through central London, banging drums in a 'Carnival Against Capitalism' organised by the group Stop G8. AFP PHOTO/LEON NEAL (Photo credit should read LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Demonstrators are detained by police during a protest in London, Tuesday, June 11, 2013 .The protestors were demonstrating against the upcoming G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 17 and 18. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

  • A demonstrator is detained by police during a protest in London, Tuesday, June 11, 2013 .The protestors were demonstrating against the upcoming G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 17 and 18. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

  • A demonstrator is take to a police vehicle after he was detained during a protest in London, Tuesday, June 11, 2013 .The protestors were demonstrating against the upcoming G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 17 and 18. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

  • A demonstrator is taken to a police van after he was detained during a protest in London, Tuesday, June 11, 2013 .The protestors were demonstrating against the upcoming G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 17 and 18. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

  • Police line a street near a protest in London, Tuesday, June 11, 2013 .The protestors were demonstrating against the upcoming G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 17 and 18. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

  • Demonstrators carry placards during a protest in London, Tuesday, June 11, 2013 .The protestors were demonstrating against the upcoming G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 17 and 18. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Police are seen on Beak Street as arrests are made as activists occupy a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Police are seen on Beak Street as arrests are reportedly made as activists occupy a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Police are seen on Beak Street as arrests are reportedly made as activists occupy a convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • G8 summit protests

    BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE Police outside Fortnum & Mason on Piccadilly as Riot police have been deployed throughout London's West End amid protests against the G8 summit.

  • G8 summit protests

    A protester is watched by police in Piccadilly, central London, amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    A protester is watched by police in Piccadilly, central London, amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE Protestors walk down Piccadilly as Riot police have been deployed throughout London's West End amid protests against the G8 summit.

  • A demonstrator is detained and searched during a protest in London, Tuesday, June 11, 2013 .The protestors were demonstrating against the upcoming G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 17 and 18. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

  • A demonstrator is detained by police during a protest in London, Tuesday, June 11, 2013 .The protestors were demonstrating against the upcoming G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 17 and 18. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Police prepare to access the convergence centre that activists of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street are occupying ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Police are seen on Beak Street to diffuse anti G8 protesters potentially becoming violent, as they reportedly occupy a Police Station ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Police are seen on Beak Street to diffuse anti G8 protesters potentially becoming violent, as they reportedly occupy a Police Station ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: People look on as police are seen on Beak Street to diffuse anti G8 protesters potentially becoming violent, as they reportedly occupy a Police Station ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Activists look through windows as police stand guard on the rooftop of the convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • G8 summit protests

    Police restrain a protester in Soho, central London, amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    Police restrain a protester in Soho, central London, amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    Police restrain a protester in Soho, central London, amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    Police officers on duty in Soho, central London, where protesters with banners were believed to be occupying a former police station in Beak Street amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    Police officers on duty in Soho, central London, where protesters with banners were believed to be occupying a former police station in Beak Street amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    Police on the roof of a building on Beak Street in Soho, central London, as protestors look through the windows amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    Police watch as protestors look through the windows of a building on Beak Street in Soho, central London, amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    Police officers on duty in Soho, central London, where protesters with banners were believed to be occupying a former police station in Beak Street amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    Police officers on duty in Soho, central London, where protesters with banners were believed to be occupying a former police station in Beak Street amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    Police officers on duty in Soho, central London, where protesters with banners were believed to be occupying a former police station in Beak Street amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • G8 summit protests

    Police speak with a protestor over the railings of a building on Beak Street in Soho, central London, amid demonstrations ahead of the G8 conference in Northern Ireland next week.

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Activists look through windows as a policeman stands guard on the rooftop of the convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Activists look through windows as police stand guard on the rooftop of the convergence centre of the Stop G8 protest group off Beak Street ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

  • Protests Are Held In Advance Of The G8 Summit Taking Place In Northern Ireland Next Week

    LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 11: Police are seen on Beak Street to diffuse anti G8 protesters potentially becoming violent, as they reportedly occupy a Police Station ahead of next week's G8 summit in Northern Ireland on June 11, 2013 in London, England. Next week will see Enniskillen in Northern Ireland host the two day G8 summit where international leaders including Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama take part in the two day event. The chosen location is only 8 kilometers from the scene of one of Northern Ireland's worst killings back in 1987, however Cameron is confident that it's secluded location will deter any potential trouble. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)