Just Stop Oil protesters bring traffic chaos while police stand by

Eco-zealots bring traffic chaos to London while police stand by and watch as Just Stop Oil continues slow marching campaign through the capital

  • READ: Eco-zealots boast they are ‘happy’ to let woman in labour through block

Just Stop Oil eco-zealots were demonstrating for the eighth day in a row in central London this morning, bringing rush hour traffic to a stand still – while police officers stood by and watched.

Footage from the slow march in Bishopgate showed City of London Police officers watching on as the protesters strolled down the road – with a stream of traffic stuck behind them.

Protesters are greeted with applauds from passers-by while two police officers can be seen standing in front of a large lorry at the front of the queue of vehicles waiting for the road to clear. 

The force said this morning that their officers were ‘engaging’ with the demonstration.  

It tweeted: ‘Just Stop Oil protesters are slowly walking in the road on Bishopsgate. 

‘Officers are on the scene, engaging with protesters and will intervene if required to ensure minimal disruption to Londoners.’

Activists continue their daily slow marches causing traffic delays during rush hour close to Liverpool Street Station, London

It is the eighth day of slow marches, which have caused significant road blocks in central London

Other marches were taking place across the city earlier this morning, with Metropolitan Police officers in attendance.

The force said protesters on Cromwell Road and at Kensington Gore had moved out of the road just before 9am. 

It tweeted: ‘At 8.34hrs today, Monday 22 May, conditions were in place for the Just Stop Oil procession walking slowly in the road at Kensington Gore to move out of the road. The protesters complied with the conditions and moved out of the road at 8.38hrs. Traffic is now moving.

‘At 8.53hrs today, Monday 22 May, conditions were in place for the Just Stop Oil procession walking slowly in Cromwell Road to move out of the road. The protesters complied with the conditions and moved out of the road at 8.57hrs. Traffic is now moving.’

Just Stop Oil said: ‘Just Stop Oil supporters have been marching every day since the 24th of April.

‘At 8am, 46 supporters in three groups started marching on three major routes in East and West London, forcing traffic to a crawl. 

‘The A10 in East London and on Kensington Road and Cromwell Road in West London were affected. Police issued Public Order Act (Section 12) notices on all three teams by 9:30am, forcing them off the road. 

‘Three further marches are expected later this morning.’

This comes after a weekend of dramatic demonstrations in the capital.

On Friday, footage showed a desperate husband pleading with a group of Just Stop Oil eco-zealots to let him and his wife in labour to drive through to get to hospital. 

The video shows the man hurriedly approach protesters and police monitoring the scene. He asks: ‘Can I drive past because my wife is in labour, is that alright?’

The activists, who were blocking the central London road, then grant the husband access – who luckily was at the front of the queue of cars affected by the demonstration. 

And in a social media post afterwards, the group boasts that protesters were ‘happy to let this woman in labour through’ their road block.

People on Twitter have slammed the group, branding the zealots as selfish. One said: ‘Just Stop Oil asserting that they have the moral right and power to decide who can travel freely on the road and who doesn’t.’

The husband can be seen approaching the Just Stop Oil activists and he asks them to allow him and his wife through

The husband runs back to the car and drives through the demonstration 

Also on Friday police shut down three marches by the eco-zealots who targeted London for the fifth day in a row – with some demonstrations getting violent.

In one protest almost 20 Just Stop Oil demonstrators wearing hi-vis vests and holding orange banners flocked to Mansell Street in east London.

Footage filmed from a window above the street showed the moment another enraged onlooker took matters into his own hands and started snatching the protesters’ banners.

He then hurled a female activist to the ground before smashing another’s phone.

In another a furious passer-by – who claimed to have worked in the fossil fuel industry – confronted activists, raging: ‘You’re talking c**p… so f*** off!’

On Saturday afternoon, demonstrators brought London to a standstill once again.

The slow march – from Parliament Square towards 10 Downing Street – was part of a relentless campaign halting traffic which takes place every Saturday.

The Met Police warned: ‘We are aware of Just Stop Oil protesters in the Whitehall area. There may be disruption to traffic in the area. 

‘Officers are on the scene and are assessing the situation.’

The slow march (pictured) – from Parliament Square towards 10 Downing Street – is part of a relentless campaign halting traffic every Saturday

READ MORE: ‘I worked in the fossil fuel industry, you’re talking c**p!’: Moment passer-by confronts Just Stop Oil protesters – before another enraged onlooker hurls a female activist to the floor as eco demos turn violent

They later added: ‘At 14:10hrs, conditions were put in place for the Just Stop Oil procession walking slowly in the road at Whitehall to move out of the road.

‘The protesters complied with the conditions and moved out of the road. Traffic is now free-flowing in both directions.’ 

The eco group regularly posts on social media to meet in Parliament Square every Saturday. 

Police said Just Stop Oil protesters were ‘walking slowly’ in three marches in the capital on Friday. 

Protesters were seen on Mansell Street, close to Tower Hamlets, as well as marching from Queen Victoria Street to Fleet Street and in from Bayswater Road towards Hyde Park.

In all three cases, police put a condition in place that protesters complied with, allowing traffic to pass.

Just Stop Oil said four of their supporters had gone on a ‘mini-march’ in central London on Friday and 18 others were slow marching as they demanded an end to all new oil, gas and coal projects in the UK.

One angry onlooker threw a Just Stop Oil protester to the ground as the group was demonstrating in London on Friday

Just Stop Oil said it was unsure whether any of its protesters were hurt in Friday morning’s violence

The group appeared to be taking part in a slow march through the capital when the violence occurred

One of those taking part in the mini-march this morning was Adrian Johnson, 57, a former deputy headteacher, from Forneth, Scotland.

Mr Johnson said: ‘Having taught high school science for thirty years, I trust the scientists.

‘They say there can be no new oil, gas or coal, yet our government is doing the opposite.

‘My wife Carol and I have engaged in civil disobedience, as we have seen nothing else is working fast enough.

‘We do this for our children, our grandchildren and everything we love and care about.

‘If we break the law, we do that in support of law and order, civil society and everything we value, because all these are at risk as the climate deteriorates.’

Just Stop Oil said it was unsure whether any of its protesters were hurt in Friday morning’s violence.

It added: ‘We understand how frustrating it can be to be disrupted, however, as of this morning 13 people are dead and 13,000 people have had to be evacuated from their homes in Italy, due to six months’ worth of rain falling in a day and a half.

Around 20 Just Stop Oil protesters slow marched through Notting Hill yesterday as they held up traffic in London

‘A quarter of a million people are currently homeless in Somalia due to extreme flooding, despite the country experiencing its worst drought in 40 years.

‘The disruption we are seeing on British streets is nothing compared to the disruption wrought if we do not stop licensing new oil, gas and coal.’

The Met told MailOnline: ‘The Met and City of London Police are aware of an incident shown on social media in which a member of the public appears to have an altercation with Just Stop Oil protesters, shortly before the arrival of police.

‘At this stage, we are not aware that any allegations have been made in regard to this matter, however, at this stage we are in contact with the organisers of the demonstration.

‘We completely understand the frustration and anger of London’s communities when protesters walk slowly in the roads.

‘We urge people not to intervene and to wait for the arrival of police, who will attend the scene promptly. We thank people for their patience.’

Just Stop Oil demonstrations have recently brought road blocks and slow marches into question. 

Last month footage showed activists walking slowly along Oxford Street in central London at the front of a long snake of barely-moving traffic when an ambulance gets stuck in the jam behind them.

Just Stop Oil said its activists moved out of the way as soon as they realised the ambulance was behind them. 

Scotland Yard has since come under fire for its approach to policing eco demonstrations, at times standing by or threatening members of the public with arrest if they try to get zealots to move.

The ambulance made its way down Oxford Street before reaching the long queue of traffic stuck behind the Just Stop Oil activists.

But it became stuck due to a number of lorries and vans blocking the one-way road ahead. The ambulance did not appear to have its sirens activated, but video shows the protesters continuing their march despite the vehicle being just a couple of cars behind them.

A spokesman for Just Stop Oil said: ‘Our policy is, and has always been, to move out of the way for emergency vehicles with “blue lights” on.’

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