Protestors numbering in the hundreds tried to gain access to the Irish parliament building on Tuesday night but most were repulsed by police who, by one account, had to draw their batons.

The demonstration against government economic policies turned violent when members of the crowd charged the gates of the building.

Some succeeded in getting inside and police reinforcements were forced to lock down the entire building.

Members of the Irish Dail were unable to leave their rooms and were forced to remain inside the building until the all clear.