Londoners face a fourth day of anarchy as climate change protesters are to maintain roadblocks across the capital.
Who is actually in charge of the capital? Despite thousands protesting there has only been a mere 400 arrests furthermore, the Met Police could not confirm to LondonLovesBusiness early this morning, as to whether or not anyone has actually been charged.
However, three climate change activists were charged and have been denied bail after protesting and blocking the Docklands Light Railways train, at Canary Wharf on Wednesday.
They are to remain in custody and to appear at Blackfriars Crown Court on 16 May.
It has been reported that once protesters are released from custody with a little slap on the hand, they are heading straight back to the “front line.”
Whilst other police officers are making arrests and trying to bring law and order to London, two officers have been filmed dancing with protesters.
The video shows two police officers amongst a huge crowd, pumping their fists in the air whilst activists are shouting “we love it, we love it”
Police solidarity with ExtinctionRebellion at Oxford Circus!! Brilliant!!!! pic.twitter.com/jcapfGuukI
— WatersideCafeWildlifeGarden (@WildlifeCafe) April 17, 2019
Meanwhile, Met Police chief Jane Connors told LBC Radio about the climate change protesters, “It is a strain. They’re a strain on police resources. We trying to manage all of our business as usual and the priorities that we have for our communities.”
There seems no end in sight to the chaos as activists say they are planning to continue with road blocks, and on Thursday morning activist blocked Vauxhall Bridge, close to MI6 headquartes.
Demonstrators continue to intermittently block Vauxhall Bridge northbound. Traffic is queuing on approach, extending back towards Vauxhall. Traffic is slow moving on Nine Elms Lane, on approach to Vauxhall gyratory. pic.twitter.com/3QVYZrul7F
— TfL Traffic News (@TfLTrafficNews) April 18, 2019
More than half a million people have been affected by the constant traffic gridlock to transport and businesses since Monday.
And a YouGov poll suggests that public opinion has now swung against the Extinction Rebellion climate change protesters.
Robin Boardman-Pattison, of Extinction Rebellion walked out of a live televised interview on Sky News with Adam Boulton yesterday. He said activists are planning to step up action on the rail and underground network.
He said, “We will be escalating our disruption throughout the week.
“The impact to the Tube system will grow.”
Sadiq Khan, the mayor of London said on Twitter, “We’re facing a climate emergency. I fully support the right of protesters to protest on this vital issue, and urge organisers to work with police to ensure their demonstrations are peaceful and lawful and that disruption is kept to a minimum.”
However, the mayor’s comments angered the chairman of the Police Federation, John Apter as he told the Telegraph that “officers are under enough pressure as it is.”
“What we don’t need, as well-intended as it might be, is a politician aggravating the situation and making it worse.
“The likes of Sadiq Khan should be supporting the police, especially when we are having to deal with rising crime on our streets.”
David Frost, chief executive of London Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) said,“The London Underground is vital to the everyday lives of the capital’s residents, businesses, commuters and tourists alike.
“It is one of the world’s leading mass transportation systems, keeping cars off the roads and helping reduce carbon emissions. Disrupting it in order to send a message about climate change seems to very much miss the point.
“London’s businesses, and I believe most Londoners, will be hoping that the activists behind this threat decide instead to get their views across in a way which does not cause disarray.”
The mayor of London, Sadiq Khan said to LondonLovesBusiness, “The right to peaceful protest is just that – it is a right and one of the cornerstones of our democracy. I share the passion of protestors because it is a very important issue. We do face a climate emergency and the government has been far too slow in tackle climate change.
“But it’s also really important that the protestors work with the police and others to make sure they protest peacefully and lawfully. I’m concerned about the difficulties Londoners are facing getting to work, the challenges that businesses are facing but also the protestors are now actively targeting public transport.
“I’m clear the best way to address the issue of climate change is for people to be encouraged to use public transport, to walk and cycle, so inadvertently protestors are driving people away from using public transport to use mini cabs and other vehicles.
“I’d encourage the protestors to work with the police and the authorities to make sure they protest peacefully and are not causing severe disruption to communities in our city.”