LONDON — Protests took place in London on Wednesday, with tens of thousands of people flocking to Hyde Park and Downing Street in support of Black Lives Matter. The protests, which have come in the wake of the killing of George Floyd in the U.S., were mostly peaceful, although there were reports of policemen being punched by demonstrators outside Downing Street, the seat of the British Prime Minister.
Wednesday’s protests came in the wake of a march on the U.S. Embassy over the weekend, while more protests are planned for this coming weekend. England is still officially in lockdown, and people are not allowed to assemble in large groups. Although many of the protesters are wearing masks, police still have the right to break up the crowds, although they have so far been reluctant to do so.
During the daily coronavirus briefing, Prime Minister Boris Johnson, said, “I was appalled and sickened to see what happened to George Floyd and my message to President Trump and the American people is that racism, and racist violence have no place in our society.”
With regard to the large-scale gatherings, he said “people have a right to protest and to make their feelings known about injustices such as what happened to George Floyd. I would urge people to protest peacefully and in accordance with the rules on social distancing. Everybody’s lives matter. Black lives matter, but we must fight this virus as well.”