A MALE Pizza Express customer punched a female vegan activist in the face after a group of protesters stormed a restaurant last night.
Activists walked into the pizzeria in Brighton holding up photos of animals saying “I want to live” and shouting “it’s not food, it’s violence”.
One customer took offence to the group’s protest and confronted them.
Pointing out the children in the restaurant, the bald-headed man told the group: “You’re scaring these people…f*** off”.
One vegan activist squared up to the man saying: “What are you gonna do?”
At that point the Pizza Express diner swung at her and shouted: “Punch you!”
The furious customer was then held back by other diners and waiters as the campaigners from Direct Action Everywhere continued with their protest.
They chanted “it’s not food, it’s violence”, “animals want to live” and “not your mum, not your milk” at the front of the restaurant.
After about 90 seconds they left the Pizza Express chanting “what do we want? Animal liberation! When do we want it? Now!”
The Brighton chapter of Direct Action Everywhere (Dxe Brighton), said it is calling on local government to demand that “basic rights” for animals be enshrined into law.
The group previously made headlines when one of its members spread fake blood inside a McDonald’s in the city.
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A spokesperson for DxE Brighton, who shared the video on their Facebook page last night: “We must stand together against speciesism, but some are not ready to hear our message of equality and justice.
“Today, whilst bringing this message to diners at the chain restaurant, we were violently attacked. It is not surprising that those consuming violence are quick to partake in it too”.
Speciesism is the idea that humans are superior and have greater moral rights than animals.
The spokesperson added: “This kind of response will not deter us, we will not back down in the face of repression; not by the public, not by the police, nor the industries they protect”.
The Pizza Express is around the corner from Brighton town hall where the group have been chained by the neck for more than 24 hours as they protest against “oppression of non-human animals”.
One of the activists who was locked on said: “We are here today for all sentient beings, who are being oppressed by the unjust laws of a system that fails to represent them.
“We are calling on Brighton City Council to show their support for an animal bill of rights and help this law be passed.
“An animal bill of rights needs to be implemented if we are to stop violence towards non-human animals.”
Another of the locked-on activists said: “I’m willing to risk arrest and my job security to raise awareness of speciesism – the oppression of non-human animals upon which our current system is reliant.
“Will you take action? Will you join the social justice movement and fight for animal liberation? The time is now – will you stand on the right side of history?”
The group is expecting thousands of others around the world to take action between September 29 and October 5 as part of a “Global Lockdown for Animal Rights”.
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A Sussex Police spokesman said: “Incidents involving animal rights activists at several restaurants in Brighton on Sunday evening, in which protesters with loud hailers chanted slogans at diners, have been reported to police.
“It was alleged that at one establishment a protester was punched by a customer, and at another activists were thrown to the ground.
“Several activists have chained themselves to the exterior of Brighton town hall.
“Police are investigating and are meanwhile monitoring the situation.
“Currently no arrests have been made but if criminal acts are found to have taken place, appropriate action will be taken”.
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