A wave of protests against racial inequality has swept through the UK in the wake of George Floyd’s death in the US city of Minneapolis on 25 May. Over the past week, demonstrators have turned their attention to statues commemorating public figures linked with racism or the slave trade.
Demonstrators have clashed with police at Trafalgar Square in London, fireworks were set off and bottles were thrown while officers tried to separate right-wing demonstrators from anti-racism protesters, Reuters reported, citing witnesses.
Earlier in the day, activist Tommy Robinson and his supporters gathered in Whitehall to “protect” the statues from possible vandalism by anti-racism demonstrators.
During the previous protests this week, the Cenotaph war memorial and a statue of former Prime Minister Winston Churchill in Parliament Square were defaced. Fears of further violence have prompted Khan to construct protective barriers around both landmarks in a bid to prevent further damage, although concerns remain as to whether the police will be able to prevent further disorder.