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Extinction Rebellion: Police make 340 arrests as demonstrators vow to continue protests overnight

Extinction Rebellion (XR) climate activists have vowed to continue to occupy four main sites in London overnight after a third day of protests.

Police have made 340 arrests over the past three days of protests, most of them for demonstrating in areas where a restriction is in place, including Waterloo Bridge, Parliament Square and Oxford Circus.

Activists, who are demanding a meeting with the government, said they plan to continue their roadblocks, which have affected more than half a million people with road closures, traffic gridlock and disruption to transport and businesses since Monday, until at least next Friday.

Jeremy Corbyn's wife Laura Alvarez looks on from her front garden at climate change protesters. Credit: PA

XR say direct action is needed to force authorities to act urgently on climate change and wildlife declines and halt a "sixth mass extinction".

Earlier, two men and two women had used glue and a bike lock to prevent police removing them from outside Mr Corbyn's house before leaving of their own accord and apologising for "upsetting" his wife, Laura Alvarez.

It was the latest development on the third day of demonstrations which has seen 340 arrests.

Scroll down to see how the day unfolded.

Police take down a gazebo that protesters had erected in Parliament Square. Credit: PA

8.15pm update: Protesters trying to set up new barriers around Parliament Square

A small group has pulled a green banner across the entrance to Bridge Street.

But police stopped another group trying re-erect a gazebo in place of one that was taken down by officers earlier in the evening.

The number of protesters has swelled in Parliament Square after police moved in and began carrying off people sitting and lying in the streets.

Michael Gove said the protests were 'over the top'. Credit: AP

8.08pm update: Michael Gove tells protesters "we've got the message"

The Environment Secretary called the Extinction Rebellion demonstrations "over the top".

"I do worry sometimes about some of the scenes we've seen and some of the activity that goes on. So I think it's appropriate for people to make their feelings known but I also think we've got the message; we understand that action needs to be taken," he told BBC's One Show.

"And in fact some of the activity that's been going on the streets has actually stopped people doing their jobs and also impeded, for example, people getting around London in a way that's appropriate."

5.05pm update: Protesters have left Jeremy Corbyn's home

The four protesters had chained to Jeremy Corbyn's garden fence have left.

When asked why, Tracee Williams, 55, said: "I don't think this was a misstep but whether we'd do it again, I'm not so sure.

"We just really felt we had to bring it to his front door.

"I feel absolutely terrible about upsetting his wife."

Earlier, Skeena Rathor, a Labour district councillor for Stroud said: "I feel really sorry and sad and guilty."

They said they have had conversations with Mr Corbyn's staff about a potential meeting next week.

Waterloo Bridge remains for a third day as protests continue. Credit: Tim Hughes

5pm update: 340 people have now been arrested

Over 300 people had been arrested by 5pm on Wednesday after protests in Parliament Square, Waterloo Bridge, Oxford Circus and Marble Arch during the week.

Scotland Yard could not confirm whether or not anyone had been charged with any criminal offences.

Campaigners said the cells in the capital are full and "operating on a one-in, one-out capacity", while some of those being released from custody have rejoined the protests.

Protesters on Waterloo Bridge as activists show no sign of letting off. Credit: Tim Hughes

4.35pm update: Activists climb onto Waterloo Bridge bus stop

A group of demonstrators dressed all in red to represent "the blood of the extinction" have arrived at Waterloo Bridge and climbed onto a bus stop.

A member said: "We are representing the blood on our hands, greed and the loss of several species across the world."

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4.28pm update: Sadiq Khan raises concerns on protests

London mayor Sadiq Khan has said to protesters disrupting public transport "you're not helping the cause."

I am concerned if people are risking their own safety or the safety of others. But I am also concerned on the impact on public transport. I am somebody who believes passionately in climate change but I believe if you are, by your actions, reducing the numbers using public transport. You're not helping the cause.

– Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan

3.53pm update: Protesters glue themselves to Corbyn's home

Extinction Rebellion protesters have glued themselves together outside Jeremy Corbyn's north London home in what they said was a bid to get the Labour leader to commit to tackling climate change.

The activists said they are "all Jeremy Corbyn supporters" but want the Labour Party to go further than declaring a "climate emergency".

One of the protesters outside the home of Jeremy Corbyn chained herself to the leader of the Opposition's garden fence with a bike lock.

3.45pm update: Springwatch presenter joins protests

Springwatch presenter Chris Packham has joined Extinction Rebellion protesters at Oxford Circus.

The naturalist tweeted a picture of the crowds with the message: "Spirits high and the mood is peaceful and resolute at Oxford Circus with @ExtinctionR"

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3.14pm update: Demonstrations in pictures

Demonstrators from the Extinction Rebellion group continued their campaign to disrupt business in London with public transport bearing the brunt of their actions on Wednesday.

The protesters claim their action is necessary to draw attention to threats to the environment.

Their critics, including Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, have questioned whether disrupting public transport is consistent with their aims of environmentally-friendly policies while transport bosses have tried to de-activate WiFi in order to disrupt the protests.

Aside from the disruption caused, the protests has seen activists of all ages take to the streets - with some striking costumes and witty placards.

Models and performers take part in the Extinction Rebellion's Fashion: Circus of Excess catwalk in Oxford Circus, London. Credit: PA
Rainbow colour costumes and placards were seen. Credit: PA

2.45pm update: Protests happening over the world

London is not the only city where Extinction Rebellion protests are taking place.

Australia, LA, Ireland, Scandinavia and New Zealand are holding demonstrations.

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2:00pm update: Disruption 'could cost West End millions'

Climate change protesters are causing serious disruption in London. Credit: PA

A representative for businesses based in London's West End has warned disruption caused to the shopping hotspot by the climate protests could cost companies hundreds of millions of pounds.

Jace Tyrell, chief executive of the New West End Company, said the protest had brought a feeling of "intimidation" to the West End shopping district and, on average, caused a 25% drop in spending in the area, with #12 million less spent on Tuesday.

He told Sky News the cost could rise to the hundreds of millions if Oxford Circus and Marble Arch stations are not opened "pretty quickly".

1:34pm update: Two more arrested

Two further arrests have been made following the protest on a train at Canary Wharf DLR station, British Transport Police confirm.

The force said a man and a woman were in custody, held on suspicion of obstructing the railway.

1.27pm update: Drax protest

Activists are staging a demonstration outside the AGM of energy firm Drax.

Drax operates the largest biomass-fuelled power station in Europe, situated in North Yorkshire.

The company receives green energy subsidies from the government. The protesters claim that by burning biomass, Drax produces as much carbon as burning coal.

They plan to walk from Drax's AGM to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on Wednesday afternoon.

We say we need to be dedicating all our intelligence, Drax's included, to achieving a genuine transition to a low carbon future.

At the moment, we need the money that's going to them to go to a smart, decentralised, democratised, genuinely low carbon electricity energy system. This is an obscenity.

– Duncan Law, Biofuelwatch campaigner
Protestors block the roads in parliament square. Credit: AP

12.53pm update: Protesters remain at key London locations

Climate activists have remained at locations across the capital, including Oxford Circus, Marble Arch and Waterloo Bridge.

Extinction Rebellion has said it is "really disappointed" in the Met Police for its response to protests.

A comment from its official Twitter account reads: "Really disappointed in the police. As soon as our international solidarity event started, police moved in to begin arresting people.

"We are here to show solidarity. Let us talk about the climate crisis. Let us tell the truth."

Climate change activists camped in Oxford Circus on the third day of protests. Credit: Alex Mackay
More than 300 people have been arrested since protests began on Monday. Credit: Alex Mackay

12.40pm update: DLR running with minor delays

DLR is running with minor delays between Bank and Lewisham because of the earlier protest.

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12.31pm update: More than 300 arrests made so far

The Met Police has said more than 300 arrests have been made since Monday.

The force said: "Conditions remain in place on Waterloo Bridge and Oxford Circus meaning that protesters must continue any demonstrations at Marble Arch.

"We are in the process of moving demonstrators on Waterloo Bridge. Those that do not comply may be arrested."

12.21pm update: Man arrested and taken into custody

One protester has been arrested on suspicion of obstructing a railway and taken into custody, the British Transport Police has confirmed.

11.46am update: Third protester glued himself to train

A third protester glued himself to the window of the train.

Sefan White, 24, who works for a company that produces bar snacks in sustainable packaging, was stopped getting to work by the protesters.

He said: "I work for company that makes a bar snacks in 100% recycled packaging - the first in the UK.

"I'm devastated. I'm trying to get to a job now. We've got to go round Camden on a 30-pub journey and we're going to be late now.

"We're probably going to lose money today.

"They've had their picture, fair enough, that's all you need now. Why is he spending 15 minutes on top of the tube? Explain that."

A protester glued himself on to the window of the DLR train. Credit: PA

11.07am: Protesters on roof of DLR train

Two protesters from Extinction Rebellion staged a protest on the roof of a DLR train at Canary Wharf station.

The protesters, a man and a woman, said they were staging a "peaceful protest", and were planning to glue themselves to the train.

They were stood holding a banner with "climate emergency" written on it.

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11.03am update: 'Light' rail disruption planned from 11am

Extinction Rebellion has said they plan to disrupt one overground line from 11am today.

The group said: "We expect some LIGHT nonviolent disruption at 11am."

10.50am update: Protester arrested last night back today

Peter from Birmingham was arrested last night in Oxford Circus, but is back protesting today.

"I was arrested last night at Oxford Circus. I’m here because I take what the scientists say seriously and they say we’ve only got 12 years left," he said.

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10.33am update: Tube wi-fi switched off to prevent protests

The wi-fi network has been switched off on the London underground in an attempt to prevent the climate change protests.

A British Transport Police (BTP) spokeswoman said: "In the interests of safety and to prevent and deter serious disruption to the London Underground network, British Transport Police has taken the decision to restrict passenger wi-fi connectivity at Tube stations.

"We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and we would like to assure passengers that this decision is not taken lightly and will be reviewed throughout the day."

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10.25am update: Protester apology

Protester and climate lawyer Farhana Yamin, who was arrested on Tuesday, told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "I totally want to apologise to people using public transport.

"But at the same time we need to take actions that are disruptive so everyone understands the dangers we're facing right now.

"I'm not someone who goes out on to the streets and disrupts and gets arrested for no reason at all - but I feel people should understand that we are at a critical moment in our humanity's history."

She asked those affected to "take a pause" and consider why action was being taken by activists.

10.05am update: 290 arrests made so far

Police said 290 people have been arrested in connection with the demonstrations, many of them at Waterloo Bridge.

Five people were arrested on suspicion of criminal damage following disruption outside commercial premises in Lambeth on Monday and have since been released under investigation.

The other 285 people were were arrested on Monday night and throughout Tuesday for Public Order Act offences, obstructing a highway and one for obstructing police as well as two further arrests for criminal damage at a commercial premises.

Extinction Rebellion demonstrators have already set up in Oxford Circus. Credit: PA
A demonstrator is arrested on Waterloo Bridge on the second day of protests. Credit: PA

9.59am update: Central London bus services on diversion

Bus routes in the centre of the capital are already on diversion as protests continue into the third day.

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9.47am update: Campaigners planning non-violent disruption

The campaign group said it is planning to "non-violently disrupt Tube services to highlight the emergency of ecological collapse" on Wednesday if the Government does not meet its members.

It added: "Participants will peacefully break the law in order to stop the Tube and then will wait to be arrested.

"We sincerely apologise to all those who may suffer as a consequence of this disruption. In any other circumstances we would never dream of disrupting the Tube but this is an emergency.

"We request that workers do not intervene in the protests to ensure that they go as smoothly and safely as possible for all involved."

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9.35am update: Sadiq Khan 'extremely concerned' about Tube protests

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said that while he shared the passion of the protesters about the urgent need to tackle climate change he was "extremely concerned" about plans to disrupt the London Underground.

In a statement posted on Twitter he said: "It is absolutely crucial to get more people using public transport, as well as walking and cycling, if we are to tackle this climate emergency - and millions of Londoners depend on the Underground network to get about their daily lives in our city.

"Targeting public transport in this way would only damage the cause of all of us who want to tackle climate change, as well as risking Londoners' safety and I'd implore anyone considering doing so to think again."

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9.14am update: Climate activists plan to target Tube services

Climate change campaigners are planning to disrupt Tube services as part of a series of protests.

The protests are entering their third day and have led to road closures, traffic gridlock and serious disruption to public transport and local businesses, with 55 bus routes closed and 500,000 people affected.

At this stage it is not clear how protesters will target the underground network but Londoners have been told to brace for disruption.