Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Demonstrators block roads outside the UK Parliament building

LONDON (AP) – Dozens of climate change activists blocked roads in front of London’s parliament building on Thursday, some stuck to the ground as part of the group’s ongoing protests.

About 60 supporters of the Insulate Britain group sat on the ground with banners, blocking two roads around the parliament. House of Commons Speaker Lindsay Hoyle said it was “completely unacceptable” that the group “interfered with democracy” after a lawmaker was unable to enter parliament to attend a meeting on transportation.

Insulate Britain has held protests in recent weeks blocking roads and highways in London and elsewhere in the UK to pressure the government to improve energy efficiency in people’s homes by 2030. The group is also targeting London’s financial district. Dozens of protesters were arrested.

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Their protests angered many motorists and officials called their actions “unacceptable,” but the group pledged to continue their “civic resistance.”

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Transportation Secretary Grant Shapps said Thursday that 475 contempt of court injunctions were issued to the group’s protesters. Injunctions mean protesters can be fined and jailed for blocking roads.

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“When it comes to climate protests preventing members of this House from coming here to hold ministers accountable and heard, it’s clearly counterproductive,” he said.

Paul Shiki, a protester from London, glued to the sidewalk during Thursday’s protests.

“The death and destruction that is coming if we don’t solve this problem is simply unimaginable,” he told reporters. “A little discomfort now is a small price to pay to save lives in the future.”

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