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Extra police deployed for London protests

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Extra police deployed for London protests

700 officers on duty in capital to police multiple protests

Extra officers will be on duty in London this weekend as a pro-Palestine march, a counter protest and potentially a Just Stop Oil event take place, the Metropolitan Police said.

About 700 officers will be on duty to police the events, plus more to manage smaller protests in London, the Wimbledon Championships and other events, the force added.

The Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) is holding an event from noon on Saturday and there is expected to be a counter protest by Enough is Enough in central London.

The Met has used powers to place conditions on the protests to “ensure we minimise serious disruption to the community and balance the rights of all”, the force said.

Superintendent Martin Kirby, who is leading policing in London this weekend, said: “As always the goal is to protect the right to peaceful protest while minimising the impact of these events, including on London’s Jewish communities.

“Police do not have the power to ban protest unless there is a risk of serious disorder.

“We have been liaising with the PSC throughout this week and will have a significant number of officers on duty to maintain law and order.

“Officers will be on hand to ensure the events pass off without issue and will step in to deal with any crime or disorder should it occur.

“We will be visible and engaging with those involved in the events and if you see anything of concern we would ask you to talk to officers in the area.”

The force said that since October it has used conditions under the Public Order Act “more extensively than during any other period of protest in recent memory”.

These have been in relation to the route, duration, start and finish times, details of any static assemblies and the ability of those involved to get near “sensitive sites or into communities where fears are most heightened”.

The PSC march will form up in Russell Square between noon and 1pm. Protesters will follow a route down Southampton Row, Kingsway, Aldwych and into Victoria Embankment, stopping just short of Portcullis House for speeches.

A number of conditions will be in place for the PSC event:

– Any person participating in the PSC and coalition partners’ procession must not deviate from the route shown on the associated map.

– Any person participating in the PSC and coalition partners’ rally must remain within the area indicated in red on the associated map.

– The PSC and coalition partners’ stage may only be set up in Embankment in the place shaded blue on the associated map.

– The PSC and coalition partners’ rally must conclude by 5.30pm.

It is believed Enough is Enough plans a static protest close to the route of the PSC march, the Met said.

Participants must not gather before noon and must remain in the area on the Strand indicated on the map.

The Met has also imposed conditions on Just Stop Oil after information that suggests the eco campaign group may be planning an event on Saturday.

Any person participating in the “Resistance Starts Here” assembly – or individuals associated with the group – must not enter the area shaded in red on the map. This includes all roads, pavements and green spaces.

Published: by Radio NewsHub

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