Eight arrests after Extinction Rebellion protesters 'glue themselves' inside Commons Chamber

XR said around 50 protesters took part in 'non-violent' demonstrations around the Houses of Parliament. Credit: Extinction Rebellion

Police have arrested eight people involved in the Extinction Rebellion (XR) protest at the Palace of Westminster (PoW) on Friday.

“Four protesters who were present in the chambers and had glued themselves to each other were de-bonded and arrested. None of these protesters were glued to the Speaker’s chair and there has been no damage to the Speaker’s chair," the Metropolitan Police Force said in a statement.

“A protester who glued himself to the pavement inside the PoW was de-bonded and arrested. A protester who climbed onto some scaffolding within the PoW came down of his own volition and was arrested.

“All of the above six individuals were arrested on suspicion of offences under Section 128 of the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act of 2005.

“Two protesters who locked themselves to the Carriage Gates were removed and arrested for failing to comply with directions under Section 143 of the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act of 2011. All of those arrested have been taken into custody at central London police stations where they currently remain."

Protesters padlocked themselves to the gates outside the Houses of Parliament. Credit: PA

The force added an investigation had been launched into the incident "in close liaison with our parliamentary security colleagues to establish the full circumstances".

XR said around 50 people took to the Houses of Parliament to kick off the "first phase" of plans to "bring 100,000 people onto the streets in civil resistance next Spring".

Banners were dropped across the Palace of Westminster, reading "let the people decide", while two protesters were seen with padlocks around their necks connected to the front gates of the Houses of Parliament.

A speech read out called for "fairer" climate action, adding: “We are in crisis. And what goes on in this Chamber every day makes a joke out of us all. We cannot afford to carry on like this."

The Commons Chamber is currently open to the public while Parliament is in recess. XR said activists gained access to the building by booking an official tour.

The group criticised British politics of being "too out of date and out of touch to see beyond the next election cycle and do what needs to be done" to tackle climate change in a way that is "fair and supports everyone".

XR demonstrator Lisa from Newbury joined fellow protesters outside the gates of Parliament.

She said: “We are here today because we are addressing the seat of power here in Parliament, because it is not working. It is broken.

A banner was rolled out across scaffolding. Credit: PA

“We have got a horrendous climate crisis, a huge, obscene, terrible cost-of-living crisis and it is not working.

“We need to let the people decide on the next actions and we do that through a citizens’ assembly.”

The group has shared more dates of planned action between September and October.