Just Stop Oil supporters arrested for marching as police continue to facilitate the criminal acts of government

Just Stop Oil supporters are marching in resistance to the UK government’s plans to licence new oil and gas. [1]

At 9am this morning, over 55 Just Stop Oil supporters from South Wales, the North, and the South West of England began marching around Waterloo Roundabout and over the bridge. At 9:15 around 20 Metropolitan Police began engaging with the marchers and issued a Section 7 order from the Public Order Act 2023. At 9:29 arrests began. All supporters taking action today are expected to be arrested.

On Monday over 100 Just Stop Oil supporters were arrested for marching down Whitehall from Trafalgar square. It was incorrectly reported on social media that Just Stop Oil supporters had targeted the cenotaph, It was later confirmed by the Met that it was in fact the police that had moved Just Stop Oil supporters towards the cenotaph after they had arrested them. [2]

Sixteen people were held to appear in court from police custody and were seen at Stratford, Westminster and Bromley Magistrates Courts on Tuesday. Five people remain in police custody, they have been held for over 45 hours.They are expected to appear in court this morning.

One of those on the road this morning, Geraldine Swift, 57, an NHS consultant psychiatrist, said:

“I am a passionate and persistent moderate who believes in the rule of law, but this cannot be an absolute – we can all think of bad laws in the past, and bad decisions made by governments.”

“We are in a climate and health emergency now: this is what the science tells us, the United Nations and my college, the Royal College of Psychiatrists.”

“Rishi Sunak, please STOP all new exploitation of fossil fuels. People of Britain, please join me in this demand for our planet, our health and our children.”

“I believe that the level of risk and urgency justifies my breaking the law and I am willing to be arrested for my beliefs, having never been in trouble with the police before.”

Also marching today is Mike Exley, 66, a builder from Stroud. He said:

“As a father of 2 grown up girls and having 2 grown up step-children, I feel extremely worried about their future lives. This government’s willingness to ignore climate scientists & to continue to issue licences for the extraction of gas, oil & coal, only shows their callous disregard for my children’s survival.”

“The thought that our beautiful home, now quickly being depleted of wildlife, might soon edge towards an unstoppable climate catastrophe, just fills me with sadness & rage. Me marching today will be seen as a criminal act by this government, but these politicians, who’s short term greed & disregard for my children’s life, are the true criminals.”

This morning’s march comes as there are still thousands of homes and businesses without water in Surrey after Storm Ciarán left a treatment facility damaged. Record sea temperatures are driving an increase in extreme weather events and supercharging storm systems. [3]

We are not prepared to watch while the government plans for millions to die and destroys everything we love. It’s up to all of us now to come together and resist. We cannot let them divide us. Together we can be the real opposition this country needs and we will win. We will stop new oil and gas. 

From 20th November, Just Stop Oil is calling on everyone to join us every day at midday in Trafalgar Square to march in London until the government comes to its senses and ends new oil and gas. 


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Notes to Editors

[1] Just Stop Oil is a coalition of groups working together to demand that the government immediately halt all future licensing and consents for the exploration, development and production of fossil fuels in the UK. Just Stop Oil is a member of the A22 Network of civil resistance projects.

Just Stop Oil ‘Blue Lights’ policy: our policy is, and has always been, to move out of the way for emergency vehicles with siren sounding and ‘blue lights’ on. 

[2] https://twitter.com/metpoliceuk/status/1722168581297709468

[3] https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-surrey-67330745