Simply shocking. Well, not that surprising. But still…
Thousands of demonstrators planning to march on Parliament to call for the withdrawal of troops from Afrghanistan and Iraq have been told that their protest has been banned.
The Metropolitan Police told organisers of the Stop the War Coalition that no march would now be allowed “within one mile of Parliament” while MPs were in session.
The organisers, who are expecting thousands of people to turn up for the protest march from Trafalgar Square to Parliament Square, said that this was a “totally different” interpretation of the regulations, and accused Gordon Brown of reneging on a pledge to liberalise the laws on demonstrations.
“One moment the Prime Minister is supporting the right of Burmese monks to demonstrate in Rangoon, and yet here in London we’re being stopped from marching on Parliament. It’s hypocrisy,” Lindsey German, convener of the Stop the War Coalition, said.
She added: “The rules covering Parliament have never been interpreted in this way before. In fact, the police have always tried to be as flexible as possible. This is a new development and threatens our democratic rights.”
Please sign the online petition in protest, ta.