Conservative MP Brendan Clarke-Smith said today’s clashes between demonstrators and police during a weekend of remembrance showed Suella Braverman was “right” to question the Metropolitan Police’s decision-making last week. He said it shows.
Police were forced to fire back with batons at demonstrators who broke through police lines, as hundreds of Britons could be heard shouting “England to death”.
This comes just a day after Suela Braverman wrote an op-ed in the Times accusing the Metropolitan Police of “opportunism” in cracking down on protests.
He said the pro-Palestinian marches were “problematic” due to “very aggressive” chants, posters and stickers, as well as “violence on the fringes”.
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Some have blamed Mr Braverman for today’s violence, claiming his comments heightened tensions in the UK.
Conservative Baroness Warsi said the Home Secretary had “ignited the touchpaper and caused tensions in the community” with his comments.
She told the Evening Standard: “Claiming the planned demonstration as ‘Armistice Day versus a march of hatred’, touting community versus community, setting raucous calls for peace against moments of quiet reflection to commemorate war. ”
But Conservative MP Brendan Clarke-Smith dismissed those blaming Mr Braverman for the unrest as “ridiculous”, adding: “These protests have been going on for weeks and this clash was a sign of the armistice. It was scheduled for a while on the day.
“If anything, it shows she was right.”
Fellow Conservative MP Jonathan Garris accused the protesters of being “grossly unpatriotic”.
Writing in X, he said: “These acts of violence are completely unacceptable and extremely unpatriotic.
“This thoughtless outburst undermines the overwhelming law observed by the vast majority of British citizens who wish to keep this weekend sacred and solemn as we as a nation remember our glorious dead.”
Protesters were barred from entering the area around the Cenotaph in Whitehall as police formed a “ring of steel” around the monument.
Police chiefs said: “Anyone believed to be participating in or associated with pro-Palestinian demonstrations attempting to gather in the area may be subject to arrest.”
Earlier this week, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Mark Rowley vowed: “We will do everything in our power to ensure they get through without disruption.”
“The events that take place this weekend are of great importance and importance to our country,” he said.
“I fully recognize that there are significant national and political concerns about the impact of the ongoing protests and demonstrations on this period of national reflection.
Braverman wrote an op-ed in the Times, accusing the Metropolitan Police of “opportunism” in cracking down on protests.
“I am therefore determined to do everything in my power to ensure their passage without disruption.
“The law that Congress has enacted is clear: There is no absolute authority to ban protests, and there will likely be protests this weekend.”