Priti Patel: We won’t tolerate motorists lives being put at risk by activists
M25: Boris Johnson says protests are ‘crazy’
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She predicted motorists will be able to get “moving again” following the legal action targeted at the Insulate Britain campaign group. She added: “We will not tolerate lives being put at risk. Those who continue to do so risk imprisonment.” But as supporters demonstrated against the injunction outside the Home Office in Westminster yesterday, defiant Insulate Britain declared: “Our campaign goes on.”
National Highways secured an interim injunction to keep the climate zealots off the M25 following orders from Ms Patel and Transport Secretary Grant Shapps. The agency is now
seeking a full injunction.
Mr Shapps told the Commons Transport Committee the injunction would strengthen the police’s ability to deal with the “dangerous” protests.
He added: “It’s unacceptable for people to be able to walk on to, not just a major highway but a motorway, stop traffic, be released the next day and do the same thing again.”
As well as jail, protesters face an unlimited fine if they flout the injunction.
But Insulate Britain said it will only leave the motorway when “the Government makes a meaningful statement that we can trust”.
Home Office Minister Kit Malthouse said at least 270 arrests have been made in connection with the protests, which have cost drivers more than half-a-million pounds.
Labour’s Holly Lynch said her party “backed the police” if protests were unsafe or illegal. DUP MP Sammy Wilson branded protesters “highway hoodlums”.
And Tory MP Lee Anderson joked the “morons” should be “carted off in an electric police van” and locked up in a “fully-insulated” cell.
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