Climate protesters causing chaos across London say they plan to continue indefinitely until the Government meets their demands.
Extinction Rebellion blocked roads and bridges across London on Monday on the first day of its “International Rebellion”.
“We are trying to stay as long as possible,” a spokeswoman for the group told the Standard.
“There are people who are willing to be arrested.”
She emphasised the group’s non-violent ethos though and even in the face of detention she said: “We would expect there to be no violence towards the police.”
Those prepared to be arrested for their cause have been given advice on how to act should they be detained and understand the potential of criminal charges being taken against them.
Among those willing to face prosecution are “grannies, teachers, doctors and mums”, she said.
Groups occupying sites have set up tents and will be provided with resources they need to stay in place, according to the campaign group.
Extinction Rebellion is calling upon the Government to meet three key points to cease the chaos, which are:
- To “tell the truth” by declaring a climate and ecological emergency.
- To “act now” with means to “halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net by 2025”.
- To create a citizen’s assembly on climate change and ecological justice which would lead Government action.
For the action to stop steps would be needed to show these are being taken seriously, with protesters calling for an “open air meeting” at one of the sites they are occupying.
Robin Ellis-Cockroft, a co-ordinator for the group’s youth faction, told the Standard: “We are looking for the Government to meet us at one of these sites and to treat the crisis as a crisis.
“This is day one and we go from here.”
He added that “big, dramatic, potentially arrestable stuff” is planned.
He said the action could stop once the Government had showed its desire to meet the requests and a meeting would be a strong first step.
However, should the group not be pleased with what was said they would likely keep going.
He spoke of further action being taken against other sites including “banks, fast fashion and fast food”
Many of the group are prepared to take criminal action should it be required to cause “chaos”.
Obstructing the highway and criminal damage are likely to be crimes committed by those involved.
Another Extinction Rebellion source told the Standard: “I think at some point it’s going to escalate.
“There’s a lot of people that are prepared to be arrested.”
Those involved said they hoped the atmosphere would remain pleasant for the most part though, with events such as band performances even scheduled throughout the demos.
London Bridge, Piccadilly Circus, Oxford Circus and Marble Arch are among the areas which have been filled with thousands of demonstrators.
Earlier on Monday protesters shattered glass at Shell’s London HQ and plastered the building with paint.
The revolving doors of were shattered while some protesters glued themselves to the glass.
Three men and two women were arrested in Lambeth on suspiction of criminal damage, Scotland Yard said.