Friday 18 October 2019 9:59 am

Extinction Rebellion blocks Oxford Circus before Whitehall march

Extinction Rebellion protesters have blocked a major junction at Oxford Circus as the group comes to the end of a fortnight of disruption in London.

The group set up huge tripods at the junction of Oxford Street and Regent Street as they prepared to disrupt traffic yet again in the capital.

Read more: Extinction Rebellion flouts ban to march on Trafalgar Square

In a statement, Extinction Rebellion said: “In April, we sailed a pink boat into the middle of Oxford Circus to demand that the government tell the truth about climate and ecological breakdown.

“Yet six months on and government maintains society on the same course. We are all onboard this ship headed towards catastrophe.”

The group is set to spray paint red handprints onto government buildings today after apologising for Tube protests that became violent.

Climate change protesters will use washable chalk spray to paint the handprints onto six Whitehall department buildings after starting the march in Whitehall Gardens at 11am.

Extinction Rebellion has set up massive tripods to protest in Oxford Circus (picture credit: Sam Povey)

The group plans to deliver specific demands to each department on how they can help mitigate climate change before stopping in Parliament Square.

Extinction Rebellion protesters can then turn themselves in to a police station, the group said, to take responsibility for the disruption they have caused across London.

“This enacts Extinction Rebellion’s principle of holding ourselves accountable for our actions,” the group said.

Read more: Why Extinction Rebellion are hurting their climate change cause

The ceremony will conclude at 3pm at Buxton Memorial Fountain in Victoria Tower Gardens, at 3pm in Millbank.

Meanwhile Extinction Rebellion protesters shut down Oxford Circus

It comes after the climate change protest group apologised for a Tube stunt that went wrong yesterday when activists targeted the DLR and Jubilee Line.

Police arrested eight people following disruption at Canning Town station, Shadwell station and Stratford station.

Footage showed commuters drag one protester from the roof of a train before attacking him.

“We will raise our red hands, taking responsibility for our actions – we all have blood on our hands,” Extinction Rebellion said today.

Yesterday the group admitted it would have to “take stock” of the reaction to the protests.

A Yougov poll found that 56 per cent of Londoners supported the commuters, while just 16 per cent backed the protesters’ actions.

“Was it the right thing to do? I am not sure,” group spokesperson Howard Rees told the BBC yesterday.

“We will have to have a period of reflection. It is too early to say.”

Read more: Eight arrested after Extinction Rebellion protest creates Tube havoc

Extinction Rebellion has hand-delivered letters to 18 government departnments, including the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and the Department for Transport.

Its two weeks of London disruption are due to end at 6pm tomorrow.