Donald Trump protest: Row erupts after police block demonstrators from using mobile stage in central London



A row erupted today after police stopped anti-Trump protesters bringing a stage and sound system into central London.

Organisers of the Stop Trump protest hit out at Scotland Yard after they were blocked from bringing the mobile stage to Portland Place near Oxford Circus for the start of tomorrow’s demonstration.

Tens of thousands of people are expected to take to the streets on Friday in protest at US President Donald Trump’s visit to the UK from today.

Protesters will assemble outside the BBC building in Portland Place and plan to march through Regent Street and Haymarket to Trafalgar Square.

The route the main Trump protest and women’s protest will take

But left-wing activist Owen Jones, one of the organisers of the demonstration, tweeted furiously after the Met blocked plans for a vehicle-mounted stage.

He posted: “The @metpoliceuk have suddenly denied permission for a stage and a sound system for the Trump protest.

Anti-Trump protest: Organiser Owen Jones (Getty Images)

“This has never happened before and is an attack on the right to protest and free expression.”

Jones claimed police refused to meet organisers on Thursday, saying it was “unbelievably astonishing”.

Scotland Yard said the stage was blocked on safety grounds.

A giant ‘Trump baby’ balloon will greet Trump in London

It said in a statement: “As is usual, the Met asked the organisers for a crowd management and safety plan which as organisers they have overarching responsibility for.

“On Monday, 9 July the Met received diagrams of where the vehicle was to be positioned, with no mention of stewarding for this particular aspect of the event. This was not a formal notification of how crowd safety would be managed.

“At the heart of our policing operation is the right to freedom of speech and peaceful protest. “However we equally have a responsibility to ensure the safety of the public and this current time we do not feel that the proposal from the organisers ensures safety of a crowded place.”

Donald Trump Baby Balloon – In pictures

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The six metre high inflatable balloon of Donald Trump

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Protesters plan to fly the balloon over London

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Over 50,000 people are planning to attend the protest next week

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Officials have given protesters permission to fly the balloon

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It has sparked a row as some people are in favour of Trump visiting the UK

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The inflatable depicts Donald Trump as a giant baby carrying a mobile phone

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The six metre high inflatable balloon of Donald Trump

PA

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Protesters plan to fly the balloon over London

PA

3/6

Over 50,000 people are planning to attend the protest next week

PA

4/6

Officials have given protesters permission to fly the balloon

PA

5/6

It has sparked a row as some people are in favour of Trump visiting the UK

PA

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The inflatable depicts Donald Trump as a giant baby carrying a mobile phone

PA

Police also announced today that they were imposing conditions on a pro-Trump march due to take place on Saturday.

The pro-Trump group is due to converge with supporters of far-right activist Tommy Robinson, with both marches subject to strict restrictions.

Speaking in Brussels earlier, Mr Trump acknowledged his visit was likely to be met by protests, but insisted he was popular among the British people.

He said: “They like me a lot in the UK. I think they agree with me on immigration. I think that’s why Brexit happened.”



Source : https://www.standard.co.uk/news/london/donald-trump-protest-row-erupts-after-police-block-demonstrators-from-using-mobile-stage-in-central-a3885821.html

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