LONDON, June: Dozen of law backer people were arrested in London on Saturday after violence broke out as far-right groups targeted anti racism Black Lives Matter (BLM) demonstrations.
London’s Metropolitan Police said in a tweet.Far-right groups bombarded police with bottles and occasionally scuffled violently with officers as they staged a counter-protest in central London.
Police said, .hundreds of mostly middle-aged white men, many shirtless or clutching beers, gathered in Parliament Square, where video showed a small number of right-wing protesters throwing objects at a line of police, some of whom responded with batons.
Fights broke out between groups outside Waterloo station in London, with fireworks thrown before police cordoned off areas on a nearby bridge, stones were lobbed at police. Sporadic skirmishes continued in parts of the city centre.
The police, who had already imposed a restriction calling for all demonstrations to end by 5pm urged people to disperse.
Police also said they would investigate after images on social media appeared to show a man urinating on Police Constable (PC) Keith Palmer’s memorial. Palmer, a police officer, was stabbed to death in an attack outside Parliament in 2017.
There have been demonstrations around the world against racism and police abuses since the death of African American George Floyd in Minneapolis last month.
In British cities, tens of thousands of people have marched peacefully during previous days of protest.
In London, the demonstrators numbered fewer on Saturday than in recent days, after announcements by far-right groups that they would converge on the city centre prompted anti-racism activists to cancel a planned march and instead call for scattered protests.
Statues of historical figures including Winston Churchill were boarded up to prevent them from becoming flash points or being defaced by protesters who say such monuments celebrate racists.
UK Home Secretary Priti Patel described the behavior as “thoroughly unacceptable thuggery.”Any perpetrators of violence or vandalism should expect to face the full force of the law. Violence towards our police officers will not be tolerated. Coronavirus remains a threat to us all. Go home to stop the spread of this virus & save lives,” she said.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson condemned “racist thuggery” after far-right protesters clashed in London on Saturday with anti-racist demonstrators and police, who attempted to keep the two sides apart.
Johnson said on Twitter.Racist thuggery has no place on our streets. Anyone attacking the police will be met with full force of the law. These marches & protests have been subverted by violence and breach current guidelines. Racism has no part in the UK and we must work together to make that a reality.
“It is clear that far-right groups are causing violence and disorder in central London, I urge people to stay away,” London Mayor Sadiq Khan said on Twitter.