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UK News

Police in two-hour stand-off with ‘greenwashing’ protesters in Glasgow

today03/11/2021

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There had been a lot of talk about the police operation around COP26 – for the first time, it was put to the test.

What started out as a colourful rally against so-called “greenwashing” by industry and governments, and against the Cambo oil field off Shetland, turned into a city centre stand-off between demonstrators and police.

And, for a while, it was messy.

It was far from a riot – indeed, there was no hint of violence that I saw on either side – but it was a fluid, untidy situation slap bang in the middle of town.

Extension Rebellion activists, with police officers in front of them, take part in a demonstration against 'Greenwashing' (an attempt to make people believe that your company or government is doing more to protect the environment than it really is) near the COP26 U.N. Climate Summit in Glasgow, Scotland, Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2021. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
PIC:AP
Image: Protesters aimed for the premises of businesses they hold culpable for crimes against the environment. Pic AP

Protesters split up and aimed for the premises of businesses they hold culpable for crimes against the environment, among them Lloyds and JP Morgan.

They were closely followed by police, whose tactic was the throw a ‘clothes line’ of officers across the street, and so contain them.

COP26 latest updates as climate summit begins in Glasgow

More on Cop26

For a period of 45 minutes, they struggled and before police could contain the fragmented crowd, protesters had locked onto the frontage of the building of SSE.

Arrests were made and Police Scotland said a few officers were assaulted with paint sprayed in their faces.

When the police eventually got a handle on the core of the crowd in Glasgow’s Renfield Street, two lines of officers on either side kettled them in and they were kept stationary for two hours before being shepherded away from the city centre.

Extension Rebellion activists protest in front of JP Morgan premises as they take part in a demonstration against 'Greenwashing' (an attempt to make people believe that your company or government is doing more to protect the environment than it really is) near the COP26 U.N. Climate Summit in Glasgow, Scotland, Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2021. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
PIC:AP
Image: Police on the ground made the point that the unscheduled march hadn’t been arranged in advance. Pic AP
Mounted police officers escort Extinction Rebellion activists taking part in a demonstration against 'Greenwashing' (an attempt to make people believe that your company or government is doing more to protect the environment than it really is) near the COP26 PIC:AP
Image: Mounted police officers escort activists taking part in the demonstration. Pic AP

Police on the ground made the point that the unscheduled march hadn’t been arranged in advance and their view was that public safety was an issue because they didn’t know how it was going to proceed.

Extinction Rebellion, one of the march organisers, say they’ve lost trust in the police based on interactions since the start of COP26.

Until now, protests and demonstrations around the summit have passed off peacefully and without incident.

A ‘Greenwash Greed Kills’ March is about to start through Glasgow. Pic James MAtthews
Image: The march in Glasgow

Time will tell if the events of the day have changed the ‘demo dynamic’.

Amidst it all, Glaswegians not forming part of the protest looked on with interest and at least some amusement at the events of the day.

One protester blocked by police was on stilts, dressed as a tree. From beyond the police line, one local enquired: “Who are you, Special Branch?”

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Get all the latest stories, special reports and in depth analysis at skynews.com/cop26

 Sky News

© Sky News 2021

Written by: Rother Radio News


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today03/11/2021