Protesters Converge On London's G-20 Summit World leaders in London for the G-20 economic summit have their work cut out for them. They are trying to help revive an economy that is suffering from the worst crisis in 70 years. Meanwhile, protesters are trying to make their voices heard.

Protesters Converge On London's G-20 Summit

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And reporter Eleanor Beardsley has been listening to people outside that summit.

ELEANOR BEARDSLEY: World leaders may have been hunkered down in high-powered meetings, but out on the sunny streets of London, there was springtime revelry.


BEARDSLEY: There's helicopters whirring overhead. People are dressed up as the grim reaper. We've got bankers being hung in effigy, and everyone out here says they want to see a change in the way the world capitalist system works.

ABIGAIL CANNELL: We're not happy about the amount of money that's being given to bankers for mistakes that they have made. And especially the massive payouts that are happening, we feel very angry about that.

BEARDSLEY: That's Abigail Cannell, who came out to protest with her husband and two young daughters. Not far from the Cannell family, 20-year-old Rick Ganely Thomas(ph) says he barely makes ends meet on his minimum-wage salary but can't find a better job. He says he's angry about what the crisis will mean for his generation.

RICK GANELY THOMAS: When I am my parents' age, I'm not going to have a house. I'm not going to have a car. I'm still going to be living like I am now.

BEARDSLEY: Unidentified Man #1: Not at the moment, no.

BEARDSLEY: Unidentified Man #1: Well, we are not aware of the other cordons, but this cordon at the moment is an absolute cordon. So it is...

BEARDSLEY: Unidentified Man #2: I've been instructed to tell anyone who comes over here that you can't come through here.

BEARDSLEY: As the police moved in on the crowd, the carnival atmosphere soon degenerated into chaos.


BEARDSLEY: But while the violence grabbed the headlines, most of the day's protests were peaceful.


BEARDSLEY: Far from the action, in London's East End, Rani(ph) and Naan Kishor(ph) sit in their wholesale shoe shop on Petticoat Lane. The couple immigrated to London from New Delhi 45 years ago. They said their African export markets have all dried up in the last few months, and today they've only made one five-pound sale.

NAAN KISHOR: We've been in this business since 1964. We've seen good days. We've never seen a time like this, what's happening now. Things are hard, don't know what to do.

BEARDSLEY: The Kishors, the rest of London, and the world are waiting to see what the leaders will decide here today. For NPR News, I'm Eleanor Beardsley in London.


And let's round out our G-20 coverage, for now, by keeping you up to date on the G-20 count. As we informed you earlier this week, this is not actually a meeting of 20 world leaders.

INSKEEP: There's a lot of demand for a seat at the table, and the G-20 actually has a good more than 20.

MONTAGNE: But when President Obama met with China's president this week, reporters dubbed that meeting of two powerful people the G-2.


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