Extinction Rebellion: Charges over climate change train protest

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Media captionSpecialist police teams were used to remove the group from the DLR train

Three people have been charged over an Extinction Rebellion protest where activists climbed on top of a train.

A man glued himself to a Docklands Light Railway (DLR) train carriage in Canary Wharf while a man and woman were removed from the roof on Wednesday.

Two men and a woman appeared in court and denied obstructing trains or carriages on the railway. They have been remanded in custody until 16 May.

Police have made more than 425 arrests over this week’s London protests.

Cathy Eastburn, 51, from Lambeth in south London, Mark Ovland, 35 of Somerton in Somerset and Luke Watson, 29, of Manuden in Essex, appeared before Highbury Magistrates’ Court and pleaded not guilty to the charge.

They will next appear at Blackfriars Crown Court on 16 May.

British Transport Police said it “continues to deploy additional officers throughout the London rail network to deter and disrupt further protest activity”.

Activists are continuing to block traffic at four sites in the capital despite police making more than 100 arrests on Wednesday.

Marble Arch, Parliament Square, Oxford Circus and Waterloo Bridge have been occupied by protesters since Monday.

Transport for London warned delays around those areas were expected “throughout the day”.

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Protesters continue to block Oxford Circus along with three other areas

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Demonstrators have been holding intermittent blockages on Vauxhall Bridge

A group of demonstrators has also been blocking Vauxhall Bridge for short periods of time as part of a “swarming” protest.

Extinction Rebellion co-founder Dr Gail Bradbrook has warned that the group’s tactics could escalate “if our demands are not met”.

She said: “More people are joining us all the time. We’re having a fantastic time here.”

Ken Marsh, chairman of the Met Police Federation, said it was “very difficult” for police to deal with the activists as “we have never dealt with something like this before”.

What is Extinction Rebellion?

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Media captionThe co-founder of the protest group invites people to join

Since the group was set up last year, members have shut bridges, poured buckets of fake blood outside Downing Street, blockaded the BBC and stripped semi-naked in Parliament.

It has three core demands: for the government to “tell the truth about climate change”; to reduce carbon emissions to zero by 2025; and to create a citizens’ assembly to oversee progress.

Controversially, the group is trying to get as many people arrested as possible.

But critics say they cause unnecessary disruption and waste police time when forces are already overstretched.


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