Why Extinction Rebellion protesters aren’t being arrested

why extinction rebellion protesters arent being arrested - Why Extinction Rebellion protesters aren't being arrested

Authorities have spoken out on why they are engaging with Extinction Rebellion protesters.

Activists, seeking to raise awareness of the ‘climate emergency’, have obstructed some Bristol highways in their ‘summer uprising’, which started yesterday (July 16).

One of the routes they have blocked is Bristol Bridge, where they put a huge pink boat emblazoned with the words “tell the truth”.

 

Avon and Somerset Police has revealed why it is not arresting people for obstructing highways.

A force spokesman said: “We have duties under the Human Rights Act to facilitate peaceful and lawful protests and work closely with protest organisers to respect these rights, which we balance with the need to keep disruption to the public to a minimum.

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“Experience shows it’s better to work with organisers to co-ordinate a controlled protest rather than let an unregulated and more widely dispersed event take place and we’ve been working with our partner agencies, including Bristol City Council, to achieve this.

yH5BAEAAAAALAAAAAABAAEAAAIBRAA7 - Why Extinction Rebellion protesters aren't being arrested

Extinction Rebellion begin their five-day demonstration on Bristol Bridge (Image: Dan Regan/Bristol Live)

“Following information received about a planned occupation of Bristol Bridge, a decision was made by the local authority to close the bridge to ensure public safety.

“We’ve advised organisers that any lengthy protest will have an impact on our policing resources and we’ve made it clear we won’t tolerate any form of disorder or anti-social behaviour. Anyone engaging in this type of behaviour will be dealt with robustly.”

More than 300 demonstrators said they were willing to be arrested in fighting for their cause, Bristol Live reported last week.

Bristol City Council has released a statement on its engagement with the activists.

yH5BAEAAAAALAAAAAABAAEAAAIBRAA7 - Why Extinction Rebellion protesters aren't being arrested

Extinction Rebellion have unveiled a pink boat on Bristol Bridge as part of their demonstration (Image: Dan Regan/Bristol Live)
 

It tweeted: “We are working closely with police and engaging with protesters to ensure there is fair balance between our legal obligation for people’s right to peaceful protest and our need to keep the city moving.

“Therefore for public safety of protesters and citizens some roads remain closed.”

On the second day of protests, Extinction Rebellion Youth Bristol members are camping in College Green, while older activists will be challenging councillors and the Mayor on their carbon plans at the City Council meeting.

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For the latest news in and around Bristol, check back on Bristol Live’s homepage .

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