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Milo Yiannopoulos speech at UC Berkeley cancelled after campus set alight in protests

Evening Standard logo Evening Standard 02/02/2017 Fiona Simpson

A speech by controversial journalist Milo Yiannopoulos was cancelled after a university campus was set alight amid an angry protests over the event.

Hundreds of protesters joined a demonstration at UC Berkeley in California ahead of the planned speech by the outspoken Donald Trump supporter and Breitbart journalist.

Police threw smoke bombs and fired fake bullets into crowds amid violent scenes at the university on Wednesday night.

The 32-year-old Brit’s speech was cancelled over fears for student’s safety as the university was put on lockdown.

A tweet from the establishment’s Twitter account read: “'Milo event cancelled. Shelter in place if on campus. All campus buildings on lockdown. #miloatcal."

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Furious protesters: Crowds descended on the university in Berkley (EPA)

Dramatic images showed huge flames rising from the campus as masked protestors stormed through the crowd and knocked down barricades.

Protesters were pictured smashing windows of local shops and scrawling graffiti, which read “kill Trump” at a nearby bank.

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Trump supporter: A speech by Milo Yiannopoulos sparked violent scenes (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Breitbart editor Yiannopoulos wrote on Facebook that he and his team were safe after being evacuated from campus.

He said: “I have been evacuated from the UC Berkeley campus after violent left-wing protestors tore down barricades, lit fires, threw rocks and Roman candles at the windows and breached the ground floor of the building.

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Strong words: Vandals scrawled graffiti on nearby buildings (REUTERS)

“My team and I are safe. But the event has been cancelled.

“I'll let you know more when the facts become clear. One thing we do know for sure: the Left is absolutely terrified of free speech and will do literally anything to shut it down.”

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Huge flames: Protesters set fire to the campus (AP)

He also claimed that a Trump supporter wearing a Make American Great Again hat was assaulted and kicked while on the ground, according to local news site SF Gate.

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Controversial figure: Milo Yiannopoulos was evacuated from the building (Jeremy Papasso/Daily Camera via AP)

American police said at least six people had been injured during clash.

A statement from University of California at Berkeley read: “The violence was instigated by a group of about 150 masked agitators who came onto campus and interrupted an otherwise non-violent protest.

“We condemn in the strongest possible terms the violence and unlawful behaviour that was on display and deeply regret that those tactics will now overshadow the efforts to engage in legitimate and lawful protest against the performer's presence and perspectives.”

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