The environmental activist group Extinction Rebellion (XR) have launched a number of minor demonstrations aimed at disrupting the bank holiday weekend from Saturday, August 29, to Monday, August 31. The protest action comes ahead of a planned renewed period of uprisings which will properly resume with large-scale rallies in major urban centers on Tuesday, September 1. Events have been planned over the weekend in various locations, including at Gatwick (LGW), Stansted (STN), Luton (LTN), and Leeds Bradford (LBA) airports. Protests were also planned outside the Bank of England in London, as well as in Brighton, Cardiff, Leicester, Lewes, Oxford, and York.
On Tuesday, demonstrators plan to hold large-scale protests in several urban centers, including in Parliament Square in London from 12:00 (local time), where protesters plan to remain indefinitely. Other demonstrations will be held in Manchester, Cardiff, and other major urban areas. The events are being held to herald a fresh wave of protest action and further demonstrations are likely across the country in the coming days and weeks. While the events are likely to pass off peacefully, previous demonstrations by XR have caused disruption intentionally to transport and a heightened security presence is expected in the vicinity of any protests.
Extinction Rebellion previously held global demonstrations during the summer of 2019, with protests often leading to significant travel disruption, as well as numerous clashes between protesters and police. Typically, these protests are held with the intention to disrupt travel/operations in a certain area, targeting infrastructure such as overland and underground rail, airports, and government buildings/financial districts. Almost 2000 people were arrested during the protests, which brought parts of central London to a standstill.
Those in the UK are advised to allow extra time for travel due to the demonstrations and potential delays. Travelers are advised to monitor local media in order to stay up to date with developments relating to the demonstrations and any associated disruption. Travelers are advised to avoid all demonstrations in order to minimize the risk of exposure to potential incidental violence, opportunistic crime, and crowd control measures by the police.
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