Extinction Rebellion activists disrupt City in fresh protest

(c) Sky News 2019: <a href="http://news.sky.com/story/extinction-rebellion-members-glue-themselves-to-london-stock-exchange-11702948">Extinction Rebellion activists disrupt City in fresh protest</a>
 

Extinction Rebellion activists have glued themselves to the London Stock Exchange and climbed onto the roof of a train in Canary Wharf as part of the latest wave of climate change protests.

Organisers said demonstrators were targeting the financial sector on the last day of protests "to demand they tell the truth about the devastating impact the industry has on our planet".

Thursday's protests began when two men and five women glued themselves to a wall and to each other at the London Stock Exchange at around 6.45am.

They wore LED signs reading: "Climate emergency", "Tell the truth" and "You can't eat money".

Five activists later climbed onto a Docklands Light Railway (DLR) train in Canary Wharf in London, holding signs saying "business as usual = death" and "don't jail the canaries".

British Transport Police officers used ropes, harnesses and ladders to remove the protesters, which included an 83-year-old man.

All five were arrested on suspicion of obstructing the railway.

One woman, 60-year-old Diana Warner, glued herself to a train.

"It's bizarre we have to do this in order for governments to listen to the scientists," she said.

The group threatened more small "actions" across the financial district on Thursday, with further planned protests outside banks including Goldman Sachs, the Bank of England, Rothschild and Nomura.

It has also planned demonstrations outside Deutsche Bank, Royal Bank of Canada and Rabobank, Reuters reported.

The latest protests are part of co-ordinated action against the financial industry, which Extinction Rebellion claims facilitates climate change.

Demonstrators planned to "swarm" into the Square Mile to cause roadblocks, targeting big businesses and banking.

The action in the City of London is likely to last a few hours, the group said, and comes on the day it is due to end blockades at Parliament Square and Marble Arch.

A spokeswoman for Extinction Rebellion said the financial industry was being targeted because it is "responsible for funding climate and ecological destruction".

"We're asking the government to take action to address the climate emergency," she added.

Eco-protesters want urgent action to halt climate change and to stop the decline in biodiversity, and have called on the government to reduce UK carbon emissions to net zero by 2025.

Among their supporters are actress Emma Thompson and 16-year-old activist Greta Thunberg, who started a school strike movement by skipping lessons to demonstrate outside the Swedish parliament for months.

The group has caused mass disruption in recent weeks across London, smashing a door at the Shell building and shocking MPs with a semi-nude protest in the House of Commons.

More than 1,000 people have been arrested during protests which started on 15 April, while more than 10,000 police officers have been deployed.

As of Wednesday, Scotland Yard had charged 69 people in connection with the protests.

In a statement announcing the end of their action, the group said: "We know we have disrupted your lives. We do not do this lightly. We only do this because this is an emergency.

"Around the planet, a long-awaited and much-needed conversation has begun."

"People have taken to the streets and raised the alarm in more than 80 cities in 33 countries.

"People are talking about the climate and ecological emergency in ways that we never imagined."

The group added: "It is now time to go back into our communities, whether in London, around the UK or internationally."

Extinction Rebellion says it expects to carry out further action "very soon", and announced an end to blockades at Parliament Square and Marble Arch.

It will stage a "closing ceremony" at Speakers' Corner in Hyde Park at 5pm on Thursday.