150+ arrested as anti-lockdown protesters march in London, defying police warning to obey Covid-19 restrictions (VIDEOS)
Massive crowds gathered in central London on Saturday to protest lockdown measures designed to combat the Covid-19 pandemic, and police followed through on their promise to arrest demonstrators, leading to multiple clashes.
Ahead of the protest, Metropolitan Police released a statement warning anyone planning to travel to King’s Cross that current lockdown measures do not permit massive crowds.
“Ahead of a planned protest on Saturday, 28 November, the Met is urgently reminding those looking to attend that protest is not currently a permitted exemption to the prohibition on gatherings under the current Coronavirus regulations,” they said.
Anyone gathered, they warned, “risks enforcement action by officers.”
Police revealed later on Saturday that scuffles with protesters led to 155 arrests, many for breaching coronavirus restrictions.
Footage from the event showed officers clashing with and arresting protesters, many of whom were not wearing masks. Officers would at times create a wall as arrests were being made to prevent other protesters from getting closer.
Police have smashed through the barriers into the peaceful freedom march in London and started arresting people. #londonprotest#metpolicepic.twitter.com/WFdlQaD0N9— jay (@jay2864) November 28, 2020
First arrest at antilockdown protest taking place at King's Cross Station, London. Police cited covid restrictions before the arrest. #kingscross#antilockdownpic.twitter.com/AuqMKk2h0P— Urban Pictures (@Urban_Pictures) November 28, 2020
Anti Lockdown Protest London 28th November... pic.twitter.com/oun7hjEYPX— Taxi Driver... (@appseyes) November 28, 2020
Police making arrests at the antilock-down protest taking place at King's Cross Station, London pic.twitter.com/Qagbfgii7q— Paul Brown🇬🇧 Browns 🏈/ Food 🌶/ London💂Vlogger (@PaulBrown_UK) November 28, 2020
Crowds chanted “freedom” as they marched through the streets, hurling profanities at officers. Some demonstrators carried signs with messages such as, “no more lockdowns” and “stop controlling us.”
UPDATE: Police have been attempting to disperse the protesters, arguing the demonstration is unlawful under bans on gatherings due to coronavirus. #londonprotestpic.twitter.com/djQFAIu1jR— The Dispatcher HQ (@TheDispatcherHQ) November 28, 2020
BREAKING: Police and protesters have clashed at demonstrations in central London against lockdown restrictions, with a number of people arrested. #londonprotestpic.twitter.com/aVeBm9Nmg8— The Dispatcher HQ (@TheDispatcherHQ) November 28, 2020
Marchers at one point managed to break through a line of police officers in the street attempting to prevent the crowd from moving forward, and warning them to disperse.
Police lines dont work with enough people pic.twitter.com/fSj5qVYI0c— Steve Laws (@SteveLaws_) November 28, 2020
The UK’s second major lockdown is due to end on Wednesday, December 2. However, this lockdown will be replaced by a tier system where regions will be graded based on their risk level, which critics have argued could essentially end up being an extension of lockdown for large numbers of citizens, as many areas will be deemed ‘high’ risk and face continued restrictions.
There have been nearly 1.6 million Covid-19 cases in the UK, as well as more than 57,000 deaths.
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