White Cliffs lit up with ‘refugees welcome’ ahead of protests over crossings
The words “Rise above fear. Refugees welcome” have been beamed onto the White Cliffs of Dover ahead of planned protests on Saturday.
The iconic Kent landmark was lit up with a series of massive projections in support of migrant welfare.
The messages included “These cliffs mean hope” and tributes to Syrian boy Alan Kurdi on the fifth anniversary of his tragic death.
The spectacle lit up the cliffside on Friday night and was organised by humanitarian charity Freedom From Torture.
It comes amid fears of violence in Dover as rival groups are expected to assemble to demonstrate over migrant crossings on Saturday.
A heavy police presence in the town is anticipated given the levels of disorder in the past.
Both pro and anti-immigration activists have announced their intention to gather in the Kent port, despite a plea from local MP Natalie Elphicke to “stay away”.
A gathering organised by Kent Anti Racism Network is scheduled to take place from 11am in Market Square.
Meanwhile, a demonstrator who goes by the name The Little Veteran on social media is calling on people to “shut the port down for days” in protest against migrant crossings.
In a video posted on YouTube, he called for a peaceful demonstration, asking people to drive slowly along roads and block harbour entrances with boats.
Anti-racist group Hope Not Hate has raised concerns there will be violence and that splintered elements of the British far-right may also travel to Dover.
Chief Superintendent Nigel Brookes from Kent Police said: “As a force, it is our responsibility to facilitate peaceful protests, however we will not tolerate violence or disorder.
“Anyone planning to visit Dover with the intention of committing offences should be aware they are not welcome here and that we will seek to prosecute anyone who breaks the law.”