Activists based in London appear to have been targeted by police
Reports have emerged that Extinction Rebellion activists have been stopped and searched by police in London and, in some cases, arrested.
One Twitter account, Extinction Rebellion London, shared footage of police speaking with “rebels” today after stopping them for “‘random’ MOT and insurance checks”. Reportedly, the driver stopped has been arrested for having a gazebo in their van.
This correlates with other reports – shared on Twitter by Henry Langston – that police have arrived at a warehouse owned by Extinction Rebellion in South London. The group says that the police are “threatening to take rebellion infrastructure if we try to move it”.
Langston goes on to state that eight arrests have been made so far, with police on scene saying that activists have been arrested for “conspiracy to cause a public nuisance”.
Presumably, these crackdowns are related to an even bigger shutdown of London than has been previously seen, which is due to begin on October 7 and last for two weeks, or as long as it takes for politicians to outline plans to combat the climate emergency.
If so, then they definitely raise issues regarding citizens’ right to protest and send a pretty clear message about where the government’s priorities lie.
Update (October 5, 15:16) – More video has been shared, showing police breaking down the door of Lambeth county court, in an apparent attempt to arrest rebels. See below.
This moment will echo 🌪️@metpoliceuk break down door of Lambeth county court to arrest rebels for the possession of gazebos. Seriously.— Extinction Rebellion London (@XRLondon) October 5, 2019
This a movement of people, not gazebos. We are peaceful, we are threatened, everyone is.#EverybodyNow
Kennington, 14:20, 5 October. pic.twitter.com/vLKSyRc08Y
2 days to go until #InternationalRebellion— Extinction Rebellion Lewisham (@XRLewisham) October 5, 2019
We'll be at the Burning Earth site from Monday
Letting everyone know our house is on fire 🔥🌍🔥
As well as civil disobedience there'll be music, talks, installations & workshops
Come join inhttps://t.co/EZtUo7L83Epic.twitter.com/6hKtmDNKPt