Scotland Yard releases CCTV of 35 people linked to violence at London protests
Police have shared images of 35 people they want to speak to in connection with violence at recent protests in London.
Clashes have erupted between demonstrators supporting the Black Lives Matter movement and far-right activists who claimed to be protecting statues in the capital.
Ever since the death of unarmed black man George Floyd last month at the hands of a white policeman in Minneapolis, USA, anti-racism protests have been held in cities across the world.
After demonstrators in Bristol toppled a statue of slave owner Edward Colston, rolled it down the street and dumped it in the harbour, a fierce national debate was ignited over what to do with monuments of people who held racist views or played a part in colonialism.
On Saturday a combination of football hooligans, veterans and far-right activists descended on the capital to ‘defend’ the city’s statues, including one of Winston Churchill which was vandalised the previous weekend.
But protesters ended up starting fights with the police officers who stood by those same monuments. Black Lives Matter had cancelled its protest, but some anti-racism demonstrators were still at the scene.
The Metropolitan Police said they are seeking people in relation to a number of violent public order offences between June 3 and 13.
Commander Bas Javid said while the vast majority of people had protested peacefully, ‘a small minority have attended with the sole purpose of attacking police officers, or violently confronting other protesters’.
He said almost 230 arrests have been made so far, 128 of which related to Saturday’s gathering which saw far-right demonstrators attack police near the Palace of Westminster and Trafalgar Square.
Mr Javid said: ‘We are now asking for the public’s help in identifying people, who we need to talk to about the violence seen at the protests. If you have any information, no matter how small, please get in touch.’
Police have been looking through hours of CCTV, officers’ body worn video and footage circulated on social media to identify people who might have been involved in violence.
The Met said there is a ‘high likelihood’ they will be releasing more images of others wanted in connection with the clashes ‘in due course’.
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