Protest campaigner to seek European Commission help

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Indy Politics

A peace campaigner trying to maintain a protest camp in central London today said she planned to take her fight to Europe.

Australian Barbara Tucker said she would resist any attempts to move her from outside the Houses of Parliament and aimed to ask the European Commission for help.

Ms Tucker, who comes from Melbourne, was speaking after losing her latest attempt to overturn a High Court ban which prevents her from occupying Parliament Square Gardens - a grass area in the centre of Parliament Square.

"You can appeal to the European Commission who can look into what the Government are doing," said Ms Tucker, who has lived in the UK for more than two decades. "I am going to do that now as a matter or urgency."

She said she would continue to camp on the pavement bordering the gardens and hoped that revellers gathering in the area for the royal wedding on Friday would listen to her arguments against British involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Ms Tucker, who would not give her age, had asked a High Court judge to discharge an order, granted to London Mayor Boris Johnson, which prevents her from setting up a permanent camp in the gardens.

She argued that the order was "illegal and unworkable".

But Mrs Justice Nicola Davies disagreed and said the order, imposed by the High Court in March 2011, must stay.

The judge said Ms Tucker had already exhausted avenues of appeal and her latest application was "wholly without merit" because there had been no material change in circumstances.

Ms Tucker says Mr Johnson's action is politically motivated and sets a precedent which could be applied in "any public space".

Mr Johnson refutes her claim. At an earlier High Court hearing David Forsdick, for the mayor, said: "This is not a case about restricting the right of protest, it is about preventing a small group of individuals from unlawfully establishing a tented village in Parliament Square Gardens and taking possession of an important open space to the exclusion of others."

Ms Tucker has campaigned alongside fellow peace protester Brian Haw - who has also been banned from setting up camp in the gardens - for many years.

Mr Haw was not in court today. Ms Tucker said he was being treated for cancer in Germany but hoped to return to the camp.