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Extinction Rebellion protests: Arrests soar to 1,000 as blind paralympian clambers on top of British Airways plane

Climate activists glue themselves to arrival lounge in 'Hong Kong-style' occupation of London City airport 

Conrad Duncan,Emma Snaith
Thursday 10 October 2019 20:06 BST
Extinction Rebellion protests: Man climbs on to British Airways plane before take-off as climate activists occupy airport

Extinction Rebellion began a three-day “Hong Kong-style” occupation of London City Airport today as the number of protesters arrested soared to 1,000.

A blind paralympian climbed on top of a British Airways plane after another boarded another plane and stopped it taking off. Meanwhile, dozens of climate activists glued themselves onto the front of the departure and arrival gates at the airport.

The airport occupation is part of Extinction Rebellion's two-week protest to demand greater government action on the climate crisis. The group says extreme weather caused by climate change would lead to crop losses, food crises, social unrest and damage to infrastructure, and people were risking arrest to show "how vulnerable we are".

But Met Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick said said the protesters were "utterly irresponsible and completely unreasonable" for their determination to take over and occupy important arterial roads in London for a two-week period She urged them to demonstrate in the pedestrian area of Trafalgar Square, saying: "Protest lawfully or go home."

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Hello and welcome to The Independent's rolling coverage of the Extinction Rebellion protests.

Conrad Duncan10 October 2019 10:02

Boris Johnson’s father, Stanley Johnson, has backed the Extinction Rebellion protests this morning by saying people need to take a “relaxed view” of the disruption.

“I don't think many of them are breaking the law,” Mr Johnson said.

“I believe that they are wedded to non-violence, to peaceful protest.”

His support differs from the prime minister, who has called the protesters “uncooperative crusties”.

However, Stanley Johnson has insisted that his family is united on the need to deal with climate change.

Conrad Duncan10 October 2019 10:08

Earlier this morning, video of an Extinction Rebellion protester being dragged out of London City Airport by police was shared on social media.

In the video, the woman can be heard saying “You are hurting my arm” as she is dragged.

Conrad Duncan10 October 2019 10:12

A man has been filmed climbing onto the roof at London City Airport and shouting “shut this airport down” as protesters cheer him on.

Conrad Duncan10 October 2019 10:21

Polling by YouGov has shown that British adults are not on board with the Extinction Rebellion protests at the moment.

More than 50 per cent oppose the protests, according to the poll.

Conrad Duncan10 October 2019 10:39

BREAKING: A man has reportedly infiltrated a plane to stop it from taking off at London City Airport.

Video of the incident was shared on social media by a man called Warren Swalbe on Twitter.


The flight appears to be the same one that BBC journalist Nicholas Watt was on today.

Conrad Duncan10 October 2019 10:43

A former Metropolitan Police detective called John Curran has reportedly been arrested at the Extinction Rebellion protest.

The BBC’s Catrin Nye, who shared a video of the incident, added that there have been 49 arrests at London City Airport so far.

Conrad Duncan10 October 2019 10:54

More information on the Extinction Rebellion protester who infiltrated a plane can be found below:

Conrad Duncan10 October 2019 11:00

Meanwhile in Ireland, Extinction Rebellion protesters have glued themselves to the door of Red Flag Consulting's office in Dublin.

Protesters have accused Red Flag of supporting environmentally “harmful” campaigns.

"Red Flag's Dublin office has been associated with numerous harmful campaigns including: supporting glyphosate (hired by Monsanto, possibly other of their confirmed clients like Barclays which is a Dublin-based supplier of glyphosate) use via grassroots organisations,” the group said.

"They have recently been hired by several agri org's (inc Bord Bia) to promote Ireland's meat and dairy industry as sustainable."

The protest is peaceful and has not been moved on by police.

Conrad Duncan10 October 2019 11:06

Extinction Rebellion London appear to be taking credit for the man who infiltrated a plane earlier this morning.

Conrad Duncan10 October 2019 11:10

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