Bonfire Night Million Mask March: Peaceful protest is 'last thing' on the minds of many attending, Met Police claim

More than 18,000 people have said they will attend the event in central London on the anniversary of Guy Fawkes death

Rose Troup Buchanan
Thursday 05 November 2015 12:28
An Anonymous protester in Turin earlier this month
An Anonymous protester in Turin earlier this month

Scotland Yard has warned of violence ahead of the Million Mask March in central London, claiming “that peaceful protest is the last thing on the minds of many of the people who will come along.”

Pockets of the march, organised by hacktivist group Anonymous, descended into violence last year when around 4,000 people marched through central London.

Thousands are expected to attend this evening’s protest, one of 651 worldwide demonstrating against government authorities, with 18,000 people attending according to an official Facebook page. Beneath the group's official description is a warning to attendees that "The police are not your friends".

Chief Superintendent Pippa Mills, of the Metropolitan Police, said officers policing the now-annual protest had seen “high levels of anti-social behaviour, crime and disorder.”

“This year we have strong reason to believe that peaceful protest is the last thing on the minds of many of the people who will come along.”

Restrictions have been placed on the London march, with protesters only permitted to gather between 6pm and 9pm in a “static assembly” at three locations within Westminster. Additionally, a Met statement restricted the movement of any potential march.

Meanwhile, the official Facebook page’s description states: “We invite all the activists, the workers, the students, all doctors, nurses and all those that want to see a positive change in the world, to join us”.

The post adds they “openly invite everyone” but reminds attendees: “The police are not your friends, this goes for police liaison officers too, they're simply a 'friendly face' who collect intelligence.”

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