Sixteen people have been arrested today (Saturday, 26 September) during demonstrations in Trafalgar Square, which then moved towards Hyde Park.
Arrests were for a variety of offences including breaching Coronavirus regulations, assaulting a police officer, public order offences and violent disorder.
Sadly, nine police officers were also injured while policing the event. Two of which required hospital treatment for head injuries.
Following engagement by officers, the vast majority of crowds have now dispersed.
Commander Ade Adelekan, leading today’s police operation, said: “As the crowds began to swell in Trafalgar Square, it became impossible for people maintain social distancing and keep each other safe. Likewise, there appeared to be no efforts by organisers to engage with crowds and keep those assembling safe from transmitting the virus.
“This lack of action voided the risk assessment submitted by event organisers the night before. Therefore, today’s demonstration was no longer exempt from the Coronavirus regulations. In the interest of public safety, officers then worked quickly to disperse crowds. I am grateful to those members of the demonstration who listened to officers and went home.
“However, I am very frustrated to see that nine officers were injured during clashes with a small minority of protestors. This is especially saddening in light of the injuries sustained by officers last weekend. We will be supporting those officers who were injured and I wish them a very speedy recovery.
“Our policing operation will continue into the evening and I would urge everyone to keep each other safe by not gathering in large numbers and maintaining social distancing.”