A PROFESSIONAL clown who was arrested by cops yesterday during the Extinction Rebellion protest has told how cops gave him “nice hot vegan food, a coffee and even books to read”.
Tiago, who is originally from Brazil, was led away by cops outside Downing Street yesterday as climate change activists brought the capital to a standstill.
The Met Police has so far arrested 404 people.
Boris Johnson has urged the protesters to stop blocking London’s streets and dismissed the activists as “uncooperative crusties” who should abandon their “hemp-smelling bivouacs.”
Tiago, who is also an actor, said: “I use my art to raise awareness that the planet is dying”.
Speaking to LBC he said: “I intended to use the food colouring on head. Underneath, I had all white clothing and it was going to be red.
“I am under investigation…I was in the police station for 12 hours.”
Asked if he was frightened, he admitted: “Yes, I was. I’ve never been in that situation. I’ve never been arrested before.
“They were kind. They gave me nice hot vegan food, a coffee and even books to read. But I was in a cold cell for 12 hours, not knowing what was going to happen.
“I got advice…I had a solicitor who specialises in [people arrested for protesting].
“I’m not sure [If I will go back out]. I would like to, but I need to consider. Today I’m very tired and I need some time to rest.”
Sun Online have contacted the Metropolitan Police for a response.
Protesters said they are occupying 11 sites in central London and people have travelled from across the UK to take part in the demonstrations.
Activists camped overnight inside the 800-year-old Smithfield Market in London and held a minute’s silence for all the animals which had been butchered there over the years.
However they were branded hypocritical when a number of eco-warriors were seen popping into McDonald’s, which boasts that it sells 75 hamburgers every second.
Traders at Smithfield Market also expressed anger about cost to business from the protests.
The protesters set up vegetable stalls to “disrupt the idea that Smithfield must always be a place of death and environmental destruction”.
James Burden said that missing one day of trade would cost the 31 meat companies “millions” of pounds collectively.
Extinction Rebellion left large areas of Central London in chaos yesterday.
There were fewer protesters than the 30,000 forecast but they set up roadblocks on Westminster and Lambeth Bridges, Victoria Street, Whitehall, Horse Guards Road and The Mall.
This morning activists began gluing themselves to the Department of Transport headquarters, while a lorry was parked in the middle of the road outside the Home Office with protesters lying under it.
Environmentalists have set up a “village” under Nelson’s Column with its own improvised cycle lane, food stalls and a “well-being sanctuary” for tired or stressed protesters.
Grant Shapps, the Transport Secretary, today said police should be more “pro-active” instead of “standing around the edges” while tents are erected to block roads.
Hundreds of protesters who spent the night camped out in Westminster have been ordered by police to move on or face arrest.
Many of those who blocked Horseferry Road overnight have been told they will be arrested unless they move to nearby Trafalgar Square.
But many said they were prepared to stay in the camp.
Mike Gumn, 33, an NHS manager from Bristol, said: “We will decide as a group when we are going to move, and we are not going to let police tell us when.
“I would not like to get arrested, but if that happens when I am exercising my right to protest and deliver a good life for my children, then I will take it on the chin.”
Meanwhile protesters were seen taking part in an interpretive dance session in Trafalgar Square where they were told: “This is how we make a difference…this is how we make a change”.
A group also placed 800 potted trees outside Parliament, in Old Palace Yard, as they called on the government to plant billions of trees across the UK.
Last night the Prime Minister tore into the eco-warriors, branding them “importunate nose-ringed climate change protesters”.
Blasting Extinction Rebellion activists as “uncooperative crusties”, the PM called on them to abandon their “hemp-smelling bivouacs” to allow the capital to function smoothly again.
Tory peer Lord Fraser, 63, was today seen confronting the protesters outside his Westminster home – dressed in his dressing gown and slippers.
Lord Fraser waved his fist at the activists who were drumming up and down his street.
He said: “I’d had enough of the noise and disruption. It’s intimidating”.
Over the next fortnight protesters will also target London City Airport, which they will attempt to hold for three days.
The monarch could also be affected as the Queen’s Speech takes place on October 14 and is on a route which could have its access blocked.
Major events are also taking place around the world in Australia, in Europe – in Berlin, Madrid, Amsterdam – and in the US in New York and Washington DC.
Extinction Rebellion is calling on the Government declare a climate and ecological emergency, act immediately to halt wildlife loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.
Earlier in the year, Parliament declared a climate and environment emergency and the Government has passed a law to cut emissions to net zero by 2050, far later than the activists are demanding.
The group staged 11 days of protests in London in April that disrupted public transport and roads.
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On Thursday Extinction Rebellion activists used a fire engine to hose red liquid at the Treasury to draw attention to what they said was the government’s failure to avert climate disaster.
Last week the Met warned that the protests were taking officers away from other vital roles in the capital including tackling knife crime and domestic violence.
More resources have been used policing climate change protest than focusing on terror, it was said.