Police arrest six Palestine Action activists over 'London Stock Exchange shutdown'

Police arrest six Palestine Action activists over 'London Stock Exchange shutdown'
Police said it had received information about the planned protest on Friday afternoon from tabloid The Daily Express, which led to an investigation.
2 min read
15 January, 2024
The London Stock Exchange was allegedly to be targeted by pro-Palestine activists [Getty]

Six pro-Palestine activists have been arrested for attempting to stop the London Stock Exchange (LSE) from opening, the Metropolitan Police said late on Sunday.

Police said it had received information on Friday afternoon about the planned protest from the conservative tabloid The Daily Express, which led to an investigation being opened.

The police said the activists were part of the Palestine Action group, which has organised protests across the UK.

“These are significant arrests. We believe this group was ready to carry out a disruptive and damaging stunt which could have had serious implications had it been carried out successfully," Detective Superintendent Sian Thomas said in a statement.

“I’m grateful to the Express for their willingness to provide the information gleaned from their own investigation. It was instrumental in helping us intervene successfully."

Police said that a 31-year-old man was arrested in Liverpool on suspicion of conspiracy to cause criminal damage, as well as two women aged 28 and 26, also in Liverpool. A 23-year-old man and a 27-year-old were also arrested in London and Brighton.

In a statement on Instagram, Palestine Action said several of its members were arrested after "allegedly conspiring to shut down the London Stock Exchange, who raise billions for apartheid Israel".

Police said the activists had planned to disrupt the stock exchange from opening by climbing its revolving doors, locking themselves to the building's entrance and using red paint-filled fire extinguishers.

In previous protests, the group has forced the closure of buildings allegedly linked to the arms trade and the Israeli military, including Israeli arms firm Elbit Systems.

Palestine Action said five of its activists had been released, while one had been charged and will appear in court to apply for bail.

“The London Stock Exchange raises billions of pounds for apartheid Israel and trades shares in weapons manufacturers, which arm Israel’s genocide of the Palestinian people," Palestine Action told the Press Association.

“While Britain remains complicit in the brutal colonisation of Palestine, our direct action campaign will not be deterred."