At least 40 protesters arrested at pro-Palestine march in London

At least 40 protesters arrested at pro-Palestine march in London
At least three police officers were injured at the rally where between 8,000 and 10,000 people gathered to denounce Israel’s attacks on Rafah and Gaza.
2 min read
29 May, 2024
Pro-Palestine protests have frequently taken place in London and elsewhere in the UK [Getty]

At least 40 people were arrested on Wednesday during a protest in London which called for an end to Israel’s assaults on Gaza and Rafah.

At least three police officers were injured as they tried to disperse protesters who had stayed beyond 19:00 GMT when the pro-Palestine protest was planned to end.

Around 8,000 to 10,000 people gathered for the emergency protest, planned primarily by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC), to denounce Israel’s attacks on Rafah which killed at least 45 people on Sunday and a further 21 on Tuesday.

Around 500 protesters stayed until 21:00 GMT, and a breakaway march also continued outside Westminster underground station, close to Whitehall where the protest was held.

Police said some of the protesters resisted arrest, requiring them to use force.

One police officer was left with a facial injury after she was hit by a bottle thrown from the crowd, while two other officers sustained minor injuries, according to reports.

The Metropolitan police said the suspect who threw the bottle had not been identified and that police were investigating.

Police later cordoned off the station and detained people who had stayed beyond the set time.

A post from PSC during the protest read: "Our government and the Labour leadership have provided support for Israel as it commits genocide. They have blood on their hands. They must call for a ceasefire now and stop arming Israel."

Israel’s bombing of Rafah came a day after the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ordered it to halt military operations.

The Hague-based court, whose orders are legally binding but lack direct enforcement mechanisms, also ordered Israel to keep open the Rafah crossing between Egypt and Gaza, which it closed earlier this month at the start of its assault on the city.

Israel has come under increasing global scrutiny for its war on Gaza since 7 October. At least 36,171 Palestinians have been killed and 81,000 wounded, while entire neighbourhoods have been destroyed.

Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians have been displaced to Rafah, where they are seeking shelter from Israeli bombing.

Israel’s bombardment of the besieged enclave has wreaked havoc on the Strip’s infrastructure and plunged it into a deep humanitarian crisis.