Anti-lockdown protestor howls and bursts into tears as police arrest him for ‘Covid rule breaches’ ahead of London demo
- An anti-lockdown protester today wailed and burst into tears during arrest
- Three people have been arrested ahead of an anti-shutdown protest in London
- Demonstration led by Piers Corbyn is due to meet outside King’s Cross station
An anti-lockdown protester today wailed and burst into tears as he was arrested by police for allegedly breaching coronavirus restrictions in London.
Three people in total have been arrested by the Met Police ahead of a mass anti-shutdown demonstration led by Jeremy Corbyn’s brother Piers.
Video which emerged on Twitter shows a lone man weeping in apparent agony as he falls to the ground while police officers make the arrest.
Police have also led demonstrators away in handcuffs from an anti-lockdown rally in Hyde Park, where protesters chanted ‘freedom’.
Officers walked alongside the protesters who carried placards reading ‘stop controlling us’ and ‘no more lockdowns’.
Scotland Yard said the arrests were made ahead of a planned protest today by the grassroots group Save Our Rights UK called Unite For Freedom – Time For Action.
Police have urged people not to attend protests in central London this weekend during the four-week coronavirus lockdown.
An anti-lockdown protester today wailed and burst into tears as he was arrested by police for allegedly breaching coronavirus restrictions in London
Three people in total have been arrested by the Metropolitan Police ahead of a mass anti-shutdown demonstration due to meet at King’s Cross station
A protest is not a permitted exemption to the prohibition on gatherings under current coronavirus regulations in England and those who attend risk enforcement action by officers, the Met Police said in a statement.
There is a growing chorus of discontent with government shutdowns, which are regarded by Tory backbenchers as oppressive and economically damaging.
Up to 100 potential Conservative MPs could rebel against Boris Johnson in a Commons showdown next week, which could see the Prime Minister forced to rely on the Labour Party to get the restrictions approved.
Their anger has been fuelled by claims by senior officials that it is ‘unrealistic’ to expect areas under the toughest Covid curbs – Tiers 2 and 3 – to move down to Tier 1 before the spring, in a plan dubbed a ‘virtual lockdown’.
Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove warned Tories that a failure to back the measures could lead to every hospital in England being ‘overrun’ with Covid cases.
Scotland Yard said the arrests were made ahead of a planned protest today by the grassroots group Save Our Rights UK called Unite For Freedom – Time For Action
Writing in The Times today, Mr Gove said the decision to impose the restrictions was necessary to ‘pull the handbrake’ and avoid the ‘disaster’ of NHS hospitals – and private sector and newly-built Nightingale hospitals – becoming filled to capacity with only Covid patients and emergency cases.
Mr Gove also claimed that reducing infections would save the UK economy, which has been decimated by shutdown restrictions that prevent the trade of the hospitality industry and retail, tourism and air travel.
As official forecasts warn that the national debt could soar to £2.8trillion by 2025, he warned: ‘Think for a moment what would happen to our economy if we allowed infections to reach such a level that our NHS was overwhelmed.’
But former Supreme Court judge Lord Sumption today blasted the Government’s use of ‘extremely selective and tendentious’ data to justify shutdowns.
Lord Sumption, last year’s BBC Reith Lecturer, also told Radio 4’s Today programme that the new Covid Tiering system was ‘unenforceable’ and suggested that the public was growing increasingly unwilling to comply.