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16 held over N-weapons site protest

Sixteen protesters have been arrested at a nuclear weapons facility after attempting to blockade the site.

All were detained on suspicion of obstruction of a public highway in two separate batches and are currently in police custody following the demonstration at the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) site in Burghfield, Berkshire, Thames Valley Police said.

Chief Inspector Lindsey Finch said: "We will continue to work with protesters to facilitate peaceful protest and ensure that any criminal activity is dealt with proportionately."

A spokeswoman for AWE said: "AWE on-site security, the Ministry of Defence Police and Thames Valley Police are currently in attendance and will remain for the duration of any protest action."

According to the website Action AWE, the non-violent civil resistance blockade at the site started at 7am on Monday.

A notice on the site said: "The Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) at Burghfield is the place where Britain's nuclear warheads are assembled and from where the nuclear convoys take them up to Scotland to put on the Trident submarines.

"AWE Burghfield (like AWE Aldermaston) is now in the process of building facilities for a new generation of nuclear weapons. Trident already endangers us all, encourages proliferation and undermines international law. We don't want new nukes. We want disarmament now."

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