Braverman says ‘fire engine jam’ Just Stop Oil demo ‘indefensible’

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Home Secretary Suella Braverman said she expected police to use the ‘full powers’ given to her by the government after fossil fuel protesters allegedly blocked a fire truck and an ambulance.

s Braverman called the actions of Just Stop Oil protesters in west London ‘self-defeating’ and ‘totally indefensible’.

Videos shared online on Tuesday show a fire engine and ambulance with blue lights unable to drive through traffic after 32 protesters – some sticking to the road – blocked three roads in Knightsbridge and Brompton Road in London.

The Home Secretary said police made more than 300 arrests during 11 consecutive days of protests in the capital by the group demanding the government end all new oil and gas licenses and authorisations.

“Blocking up ambulances and firefighters and putting lives at risk is completely indefensible,” Ms Braverman tweeted.

“I expect the police to use all the powers we have given them to arrest those who are determined to disrupt everyone’s lives.

“Our Public Order Bill will further strengthen these powers and toughen penalties for guerrilla tactics.”

Video showed a fire engine stopped in the middle of a junction near Knightsbridge tube station, with protesters blocking the road behind and in front of the vehicle.

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Police remove an activist from a Just Stop Oil protest in London (Jonathan Brady/PA)

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Police remove an activist from a Just Stop Oil protest in London (Jonathan Brady/PA)

Just Stop Oil then tweeted a video showing protesters moving out of the way of the fire truck with the caption: “Just Stop Oil supporters interrupt roadblock to let fire truck through.”

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “These types of protests which disrupt people’s daily lives, or may even prevent our emergency services from potentially saving lives, are unacceptable.”

Asked if members of the public should intervene to evict the protesters, the spokesman said that while the government understood the public’s “frustrations” it was “up to the police to respond to this in the first place. kind of events”.

A spokesperson for the protest group said: ‘The Just Stop Oil policy is, and always has been, of letting blue light emergency services pass.

“It was reported this morning that emergency services were blocked in Knightsbridge. In reality, one of our supporters directed an ambulance away from the roadblock and our supporters left the road to let the fire engine pass.

Given the nature of the event, crews had no advance warning of the roadblockLondon fire brigade

“The public is right to be upset, frustrated, irritated and angry – their lives have been disrupted. The government can stop this today, by making a meaningful statement to end new oil and gas in the UK” , the group added.

A London Fire Department spokesman said: ‘Crews were on their way to an automatic fire alarm which sounded on Foley Street in Fitzrovia.

“Five fire engines were dispatched to the scene, with a unit from the Soho Fire Station being the first to arrive. Firefighters investigated and found no fires.

“An appliance from Kensington Fire Station was temporarily stopped by a roadblock and arrived within 14 minutes of being called.

“We work closely with our local authorities and emergency service partners whenever there are proposed road closures to minimize the impact on our service. However, given the nature of the event, the crews had no advance warning of the roadblock.

The Metropolitan Police confirmed on Tuesday afternoon that 28 protesters had been arrested following the Knightsbridge incident at Scotch Corner, near Knightsbridge tube station.

They were all arrested for alleged deliberate obstruction of the motorway and were taken to several central London detention suites, where they remain, the force said.

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