10 Downing Street
PM statement on protests following meeting with Metropolitan Police Commissioner
Prime Minsiter Rishi Sunak's statement on protests following his meeting with Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Sir Mark Rowley.
This weekend people around the UK will come together in quiet reflection to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice for this country. It is not hyperbole to say that we are the beneficiaries of an inheritance born of their sacrifice.
It is because that sacrifice is so immense, that Saturday’s planned protest is not just disrespectful but offends our heartfelt gratitude to the memory of those who gave so much so that we may live in freedom and peace today.
But part of that freedom is the right to peacefully protest. And the test of that freedom is whether our commitment to it can survive the discomfort and frustration of those who seek to use it, even if we disagree with them. We will meet that test and remain true to our principles.
This afternoon I asked the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Sir Mark Rowley, to come to Downing Street and provide reassurances that the police are taking every step necessary to safeguard Remembrance services, provide reassurance to those who wish to pay their respects across the country and keep the public safe from disorder this weekend.
It’s welcome that the police have confirmed that the march will be away from the Cenotaph and they will ensure that the timings do not conflict with any Remembrance events. There remains the risk of those who seek to divide society using this weekend as a platform to do so. That is what I discussed with the Metropolitan Police Commissioner in our meeting. The Commissioner has committed to keep the Met Police’s posture under constant review based on the latest intelligence about the nature of the protests.
And finally, to our veterans and their families, I assure you that we will do everything it takes to protect this special weekend for you and our country, as we come together to reflect on those who protected our freedom.
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