On Saturday, far-right, racist extremists took to the streets of London in a bid to protect the statue of Winston Churchill as they felt that, after Black Lives Matter protesters took down the statue of slave master Edward Colston in Bristol, the same would happen again.
Following the major violence they received from protesters on Saturday, the Metropolitan police are calling for a ban on all protests. Secretary of State, Priti Patel, said that last weekend's violence was "mindless hooliganism" and "utterly shocking", and is now calling for tougher restrictions on demonstrations after 23 officers were injured and more than 100 people were arrested.
The Met police said that officers have been injured after being kicked, punched and even hit by missiles as they came to blows with hundreds of self-styled "statue defenders". Many of those involved are believed to have been organised far-right groups such as Britain First and the EDL.
Police said that 113 people were arrested, including a 28-year-old man who seen urinating by a Westminster memorial dedicated to murdered police officer, Kenneth Palmer.
Videos posted on social media saw far-right activists fighting with police while protesting for Winston Churchill statue.
I don’t want to see a SINGLE journalist pretending not to know if Britain is a racist country. These people bought train tickets to London to defend statutes that glorify slavery and racism. This is Britain don’t ever get it twisted.— Chanté said ABOLISH THE POLICE 🦖🇩🇲🇯🇲 (@ChantayyJayy) June 13, 2020
Chair of the Police Federation for England and Wales, John Apter said: "In normal times, the principle of having the right to peaceful protests is an important one. However, we are not in normal times; we are tackling a deadly virus which is indiscriminate in who it can affect. I urge the home secretary to be unequivocal in her terms that whilst we are under the threat of this virus, any large gathering or protest must be banned."
As well as the violence in the capital, there were further confrontations between far-right groups on Sunday in Leeds. Hundreds of people were seen congregating for a peaceful protest, organised by Black Voices Matter: Leeds, however people not involved in the peaceful protest were seen battling with police.
Glasgow also saw police separating people for calling the removal of a Robert Peel statue, and those who turned out to oppose the removal of the statue were seen clashing over the matter.