Protesters express anger over trade deal

Protesters have rallied against an EU trade deal which they claim would give corporations too much power over the NHS.

Students joined a demonstration on Saturday against the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP).

They say the agreement poses a ‘threat to democracy’.

Activists marched from the Corn Exchange to Mill Hill Chapel near the station as part of a Europe-wide movement on 11th October.

Protests were held in fifteen UK cities, including London and Sheffield, and around the continent. One Leeds protestor tweeted, ‘Reclaim democracy from corporate power!’ Twenty to thirty people are believed to have taken part in the Leeds-leg of the protest, around half of whom were students.

Speaking to The Gryphon, a protester who wished to remain anonymous, explained, ‘I got involved because I am angry at the lack of transparency in the negotiation process, and at the denial of the right to petition European Leaders on the issue’.

The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership aims to reduce trade regulations between the EU and the US.

The EU has branded TTIP as a ‘common sense ways to make regulations set by the EU and US more compatible’, although critics argue it would lead to privatisation of public services and damage European standards in working conditions, the environment and healthcare.

The Prime Minister has pledged his support for TTIP, with the Europe Union currently discussing implementation of the scheme. A petition against TTIP has now reached 500,000 signatures.

Valeria Popa

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