Home UK Extinction Rebellion: Police dismantle protesters’ pink ship

Extinction Rebellion: Police dismantle protesters’ pink ship

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By Sharon Marris, news reporter

Police have dismantled the pink ship in the centre of Oxford Circus which has been a focal point for climate change protesters this week.

Officers kept a close circle on the boat throughout the day, and eventually managed to get the last activist off, before taking it apart and removing it.

The boat bears the words "Tell the Truth". It had been moored to the street for the last five days.

Earlier on Friday, actress Emma Thompson read a poem to the crowds while stood on the ship.

Image: Police dismantle Extinction Rebellion's 'Tell the Truth' boat
One of the last remaining Extinction Rebellion demonstrators attached to the boat, who glued himself to the mast, is detached and helped off the boat by police
Image: One of the last remaining Extinction Rebellion demonstrators attached to the boat, who glued himself to the mast, is detached and helped off the boat by police

Police have been carrying activists away from the protests, which have been blocking parts of central London. There were more than 100 arrests on Friday, bringing the total to 682 since Monday.

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Extinction Rebellion, the group behind the protests, tweeted: "The police have started to make arrests in Oxford Circus after we finished reading out our poems to the crowd.

"We need the government to take radical action now.

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"Please listen to the people. Or stand aside and let something better emerge."

The Extinction Rebellion boat is towed away
Image: The Extinction Rebellion boat is towed away
Dame Emma  Thompson has been accused of hypocrisy after flying from the US to join the protests.
Image: Dame Emma Thompson has been accused of hypocrisy after flying from the US to join the protests

Sky News reporter Helen-Ann Smith, who is at Oxford Circus, said Friday's gathering had started quietly but the mood has "shifted slightly" since then.

She said about 300 police officers had arrived and surrounded the large pink boat used as a symbol by Extinction Rebellion, the group behind the protests.

Later, officers started the process of freeing protesters who had attached themselves to the boat's frame.

Police estimate that 570 people have been arrested since Friday
Image: Police estimate that 570 people have been arrested since Friday

Just hours earlier, about 20 young people from the group had gathered beside a roundabout at Heathrow airport.

They held a banner saying "are we the last generation?" – but, amid a heavy police presence, all roads remained open.

On Thursday, Extinction Rebellion had threatened to "raise the bar" at Britain's busiest airport, which was expected to be used by almost 250,000 people on the first day of the Easter break.

Climate change activists are seen during an Extinction Rebellion protest at Oxford Circus in London, Britain April 19, 2019
Image: Officers moved in to surround the large pink boat at the centre of the protest

But by Friday lunchtime, the protesters left without having disrupted a single flight, saying they felt their message had been heard.

Meanwhile, actress Dame Emma Thompson spoke to protesters gathered at Oxford Circus, telling them "our planet is in serious trouble&quoRead More – Source

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