British activists linked to the US-based Black Lives Matter movement have staged a rally in London to protest against police violence in the United Kingdom.
On Friday, the protesters took to the streets in the British capital to express their dissatisfaction about police racism and violence, blocking a road that leads to London’s Heathrow Airport.
Black Lives Matter in the UK
said in a statement that it was holding a “shutdown” of roads in London and other cities to “mourn those who have died in custody and to protest the ongoing racist violence of the police, border enforcement, structural inequalities and the everyday indignity of street racism.”
Similar demonstrations were also held in several other Britain’s major cities, including Birmingham and Nottingham.
Reports said Police has arrested several of the protesters.
“There are everyday forms of racism you face in terms of stop and search, increased levels of unemployment, over-representation within mental health custody, the prison system – this is an ongoing disruption to black people’s lives which they constantly face,” an activist said.
Activists in UK Black Lives Matter lie on the road outside Nottingham Theater Royal as they attempt to shut down part of the city center tram and bus network in Nottingham, England, on August 5, 2016. (AP photo)
The nationwide rally comes a day after the fifth anniversary of the death of Mark Duggan, who was shot by police.
The 29-year-old Duggan was shot dead by British police in August 2011 in his home town of Tottenham when 11 armed officers stopped a minicab he was in on suspicion of possessing an illegal firearm. Evidence suggests there was no weapon found on Duggan, but a handgun hidden in a sock was discovered four meters away from his body.
The Black Lives Matter movement in the United States was formed after the acquittal of the officer who shot dead black teenager Trayvon Martin in 2012.
The shooting sparked mass protests across the US and intense discussions over race relations in the country because Martin was unarmed when he was shot by George Zimmerman.
Also, a new wave of protests began after unarmed African American Michael Brown was shot in August, 2014 by officer Darren Wilson in the city of Ferguson, Missouri.
The fatal shootings of Brown and several other black people by white police officers led to months of protests across the United States.