Counter protests against rallies sparked by the death of George Floyd got underway in London on June 13, with right-wing groups gathering near the statue of Winston Churchill in Parliament Square that had been boarded up to protect it from vandalism.
The Metropolitan Police Service on Friday imposed conditions on several groups, including Black Lives Matter and right- and left-wing-affiliated groups, that it said intended to protest in central London on Saturday. The Met instructed groups to protest in different parts of the city and said all gatherings must disperse by 5 pm.
The restrictions follow scenes of violence in Westminster during protests the previous weekend, which reportedly led to dozens of arrests and left 27 police officers injured. Authorities feared anti-racism demonstrations could be met with counter-demonstrations by far-right groups.
This footage, filmed at Parliament Square in Westminster, shows people congregating near the statue of Winston Churchill. The right wing group Britain First reportedly massed at the statue with a pledge to “guard our monuments” from protesters.
The Churchill statue and the Cenotaph war memorial were boarded up ahead of Saturday’s protests, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted on Friday that “the only responsible course of action is to stay away” from Saturday’s demonstrations. Credit: Daisy Hartley via Storyful