London news: Moment Sadiq Khan tells Extinction Rebellion group he is their ‘ally’ | UK | News

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The video, published by TalkRADIO, shows the Mayor in a meeting with the climate change protesters telling them they “can work together” to lobby the Government on environmental issues. It comes after days of protests by the Extinction Rebellion group that brought the capital to a standstill. Sadiq Khan was criticised during the protests for encouraging the disruption.

In the video, he can be heard saying: “We take our responsibility as the government for London very seriously.

“We are with you in relation to lobbying the Government, in relation to powers and resources.

“So we see you as allies in relation to lobbying the Government.

“We can work together.”

Earlier this month, the London Mayor admitted to sharing the “extreme concern” protestors have voiced as a justification for stopping traffic across Waterloo Bridge and camping in the middle of Oxford Circus. 

Arrested protesters have reportedly used the Mayor’s support of their action as an excuse to try and escape criminal charges, according to the paper.

Up to 290 people had been arrested in the third day of action following news of activists glueing themselves to a train as well as pitching tents in Oxford Circus, Waterloo Bridge and Parliament Square.

Chair of the Police Federation John Apter said Mr Khan’s support for the protest made it difficult for officers.

He told the Daily Telegraph: “This is already a politically sensitive demonstration, and officers are under enough pressure as it is.

“What we don’t need, as well-intended as it might be, is a politician aggravating the situation and making it worse.

“The likes of Sadiq Khan should be supporting the police, especially when we are having to deal with rising crime on our streets.”

Sadiq Khan released a statement at the beginning of the protest in London in which he recognised the concerns of the activists but urged Extinction Rebellion not to target public transport with additional demonstrations.

Mr Khan said: “It is absolutely crucial to get more people using public transport, as well as walking and cycling if we are to tackle this climate emergency – and millions of Londoners depend on the Underground network to get about their daily lives in our city.

“Targeting public transport in this way would only damage the cause of all of us who want to tackle climate change, as well as risking Londoners’ safety and I’d implore anyone considering doing so to think again.”

By the end of the protests more than 1,000 people had been arrested.



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