Officer says Extinction Rebellion should 'behave like adults'

Senior police officer says Extinction Rebellion protestors should ‘behave like adults’ and stop going floppy when they are being arrested

  • Sir Steve House has criticised tactics used by Extinction Rebellion activists  
  • Said floppy tactics used by the climate change group were ‘a flipping nuisance’
  • Tactic sees them go limp and will mean four or five people needed to carry them 

Extinction Rebellion protestors should ‘behave like adults’ and stop using floppy tactics when being arrested, one of Britain’s most senior police officers has said.

Metropolitan Police Deputy Commissioner Sir Steve House told the London Assembly Police and Crime Committee that Extinction Rebellion (XR) activists needed to ‘stop wasting police time’ when being arrested. 

The senior officer went on to explain that floppy tactics used by the climate change group were ‘a flipping nuisance’ and ‘a complete pain in the neck’. 

The tactic used by some activists sees them go limp when they are being arrested and will often mean four or five people are required to carry them away. 

The senior officer’s comments come just weeks after the group took to the streets of central London after declaring a ten-day protest. 

Extinction Rebellion protestors should ‘stop wasting police time’ when being arrested, a senior officer has said. Pictured: An activist uses floppy tactics as they are carried away by officers

Sir Steve told the committee: ‘We have asked them to stop being floppy. It might seem like a silly thing to say, but when we arrest them and pick them up they go all floppy, which is why you see four or five officers carrying them away.

‘It’s a complete waste of officers’ time, and a complete pain in the neck. If they could just behave like sensible adults – you’ve made your point, you wanted to be arrested, you’ve been arrested, get up and walk away with one officer and stop wasting police time.

‘This is a real issue, and they will not do it, and it is a flipping nuisance.’   

The police officer added: ‘The problem with them going floppy and four officers carrying them away is that it looks to the general public like the police are overreacting here.

‘We’re not making them go floppy – they’re just being a nuisance.’

Earlier this month, Extinction Rebellion activists held ten days of protest in central London, with the latest figures from the Met showing that 680 people had been arrested. 

Metropolitan Police Deputy Commissioner Sir Steve House (pictured) explained that floppy tactics used by the climate change group were a ‘complete pain in the neck’

These were for alleged offences including obstructing the highway, criminal damage and breaching the legal conditions set on the demonstration.

This month activists were also blasted by the Prime Minister Boris Johnson for ‘attacking free speech’ after they chained themselves to the gates of Newsprinters in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire. 

Protestors also blocked access to the presses in Knowsley, Liverpool, on the same evening. 

A total of 20 activists have each been fined £10,000 for their involvement in the protest, the Met Police said.

Following the scenes, the Prime Minister said: ‘A free press is vital in holding the government and other powerful institutions to account on issues critical for the future of our country, including the fight against climate change.

‘It is completely unacceptable to seek to limit the public’s access to news in this way.’  

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