Met Chief: We’ll be better prepared for Extinction Rebellion protests

Police will be better prepared for any upcoming Extinction Rebellion protests in the capital, Britain’s most senior officer has said.

Climate change activists brought parts of London to a standstill over 10 days in April, blocking Waterloo Bridge and Oxford Circus, targeting financial firms and gluing themselves to trains and buildings.

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick said their preparations were affected last month because protesters had “changed their tactics”.

Ms Dick told the Press Association: “We had done a lot of preparation for Extinction Rebellion but when they came, they came in greater numbers, they used different tactics.

“They weren’t entirely straightforward in what they told us.

“As with any big operation, we will, and are, debriefing and learning and yes, absolutely, we will be even better prepared next time should protesters from Extinction Rebellion or anybody else try to use different tactics.”

At a Scotland Yard briefing earlier this month, the commissioner revealed that the extra costs of policing the event ran to more than £7 million.

Some 1,130 people were arrested during the protests, which started on April 15, with 10,000 police officers were deployed.

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