Extinction Rebellion 'red hand' march: Protesters to spray paint Westminster on Autumn Uprising's penultimate day

Sean Morrison
ITV News

Extinction Rebellion is planning a "red hand" protest on the penultimate day of its campaign after apologising for its action on London’s Tube network that turned violent.

The climate activists will spray-paint hand prints using washable chalk spray to mark the path of today’s march from Whitehall Gardens to six government departments.

They plan to deliver a set of specific demands to each department, decided by a series of assemblies during the "Autumn Uprising", the organisers said.

Activists and commuters clashed during Thursday morning's rush hour at Canning Town Tube station as protesters clambered on top of a train to disrupt services. The action resulted in an angry backlash, including from people within the organisation.

Today’s march also follows the Metropolitan Police imposing a ban over London-wide protest, which is still in place.

Speaking ahead of today’s march, the group said: “We will raise our red hands, taking responsibility for our actions - we all have blood on our hands."

Protesters take to the streets of London in a bid to force the government to take stronger action on climate change (Nigel Howard)

It added: "We march in admission and recognition of the part we play in the injustice of this emergency, and the ongoing suffering of thousands of people around the world due to the climate and ecological breakdown."

The Autumn Uprising is due to end at 6pm on Saturday.

Extinction Rebellion protesters outside MI5 Headquarters on Millbank on Tuesday (PA)

Extinction Rebellion was forced to apologise after activists targeted the tube train at Canning Town. The group said: "It is regretful that there was violence at today's action at Canning Town tube station. We would like to express our sadness that events escalated this way.

"We are aware that one of our activists responded in self-defence in a moment of panic when confronted by a threatening situation.

It added: "He acknowledges his accountability for this action and we offer gratitude for members of the public who helped to protect him."

While it apologised for the disruption caused to commuters, the group said the incident should not create "unnecessary division".

Extinction Rebellion was also denied an urgent High Court hearing of its case against the Metropolitan Police over a London-wide protest ban. The force imposed a blanket ban across the capital on Monday, which makes any assembly of more than two people linked to group's Autumn Uprising action illegal.

The group is challenging what it said is an "unprecedented and disproportionate" ban on protests and asked for a hearing on Friday.

But, in a short ruling, Mr Justice Dingemans said the case raises important issues and could not be rushed. Instead, the case will be heard on Thursday next week.

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