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Riot police were sent in to clear a public park near the London Eye after a "large group" of people allegedly attacked officers on patrol.
Witnesses said glass bottles and other objects were hurled at officers, leading to the dramatic moment in Jubilee Gardens on the South Bank in Lambeth.
It came as revellers gathered to socialise in the park and along the Thames nearby on another day of hot weather in the UK.
Footage posted on social media shows riot officers – wearing helmets and wielding batons and shields – marching on a large crowd in the park, as a dispersal order was issued.
Did you witness the incident? Email [email protected]
A witness' video shows riot police moving in to clear Jubilee Gardens
(Image: Courtney Jones/Twitter)
Witnesses said people in the crowd continued to pelt riot officers with bottles.
One person was arrested on suspicion of violent disorder.
Police said the incident began just before 9pm on Saturday when a "large group" approached officers on patrol and began throwing items towards them.
Those officers called for backup, and the Territorial Support Group, Dog Units and the National Police Air Service helicopter all attended.
Witnesses say bottles and other missiles were "continuously" hurled at police
(Image: Courtney Jones/Twitter)
Riot police officers were called in to clear Jubilee Gardens in Lambeth, south London
A witness, who posted photos and video of police massing across from the park, wrote: "Bottles continuously being thrown at police offices who have been trying to circle around a group of people.
"Literally just looks like they’ve used half of the force to move people along."
She later wrote: "The police have closed in on people towards the Eye. All are in riot gear and bottles are being thrown at them."
Another witness tweeted: "Police cordoned off Jubilee Gardens very tense. Large number of police… bottles being thrown at police line as I walk around widening cordon."
The person wrote that there was a "heavy police presence" at Waterloo station nearby.
A dispersal order was issued giving police greater powers
A park just yards from the London Eye, on the Thames, was cleared by police
A third person tweeted: "Armed police are surrounding the London Eye, and have pushed members of the public from the other end of Southbank to past where the London Eye is.
"Police vans everywhere and helicopters flying above."
A Metropolitan Police spokesperson said: "Shortly before 9pm on Saturday, 12 June, officers on patrol in the area of Jubilee Gardens, close to the London Eye, were approached by a large group of people who began throwing items towards them.
"Additional officers, including the Territorial Support Group, Dog Units and the National Police Air Service attended.
"One person was arrested on suspicion of violent disorder.
"At this stage we are not aware of any reports of any injuries to officers.
"A Section 35 Dispersal Order was authorised and the group were dispersed."