As the pomp and grandeur of the Military Parade began in London, there was a momentary disruption as climate change protesters ran out in front of soldiers who were marching in the parade. The parade was one of the events that was held to commemorate the platinum jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. The activists were arrested by the Met police.
“Today we have made 12 arrests for obstruction of the highway. This follows an incident this morning where people attempted to enter the ceremonial route on The Mall,” police said on Twitter.
Tens of thousands of people had gathered on The Mall which leads to Buckingham Palace, the main residency of the British monarchy, in London. The military parade was marching along the grand boulevard when animal and climate activists broke through the barricades and lay down on the wide pathway in front a marching band, or blocked the marching soldiers, according to footage seen on television.
One of the protesters seemed to be carrying a banner which might have read “reclaim royal land”, while another wore a golden crown on his head. The police dragged the protesters and later posted on Twitter that they had arrested 12 people for obstructing the highway. They said that the arrests were due to an incident on Thursday morning, “where people attempted to enter the ceremonial route on The Mall.”
The Animal Rebellion group said that its activists were involved in the Thursday morning incident at The Mall. The group said that it used “non violent civil disobedience” to put forth its message of helping to transition to a food system that was based on plants.
One of the protesters, who was arrested by the police, said that he wanted the royal family to rewild the crown estate, according to a report by Reuters. He also said that the estate should not be used for animal agriculture.
According to an earlier report in The Guardian, protesters from Animal Rebellion had painted the iconic fountain outside Buckingham Palace red and accused the Queen of “having blood on her hands.”
The groups says that it wants crown lands not to be used for hunting and animal agriculture. It also campaigns against the attempts by the royals to get exemptions from an initiative that would cut carbon emissions on their land.
The jubilee procession continued after the disturbance to the Horse Guards Parade. Prince Charles received the royal salute on behalf of the Queen. Queen Elizabeth II followed the platinum jubilee event from the famous balcony at Buckingham Palace.