In the group’s fifth consecutive day of action Extinction Rebellion (XR) activists have vandalised Guildhall and the headquarteres of Standard Chartered.
In a video shared on Twitter police could be seen clashing with protestors as the green rabble rousers painted red streaks and pressed handprints onto the bank’s main entrance. Activists also targeted the Guildhall.
Extinction Rebellion said in a statement: “The Guildhall is the administrative and ceremonial heart of the corporation of the City of London.
“It is the symbolic and actual centre of the system that is killing us.”
Chris Harris, a spokesperson for Extinction Rebellion Unify justified the move, saying “finance is the grease in the wheels of global exploitation.”
“Whether it be the trillions of dollars in resources drained from the Global South, or the billions of tonnes of carbon emissions produced in the name of profit by companies here in the City,” he said.
Standard Chartered Bank confirmed the incident in a statement saying that the building’s security team worked with London police to ensure that all those inside the bank were safe.
“We have been clear that we intend to remain leaders in articulating a path to net zero by 2050 and are committed to detailed transparency on our transition strategy and plan to put it to a shareholder advisory vote in 2022,” the spokesperson added.
Today’s demonstration comes as part of a two week long direct action campaign organised by XR in the build up to COP26.
At approximately 12pm today activists met outside the Bank of England to begin the “blood money” march kicking off a day of action aimed at highlighting the contribution of financial services to the climate crisis.
Extinction Rebellion is calling on the UK Government to halt all new fossil fuel investment immediately.
Fake blood was also poured over the London Stock Exchange, while earlier in the week the water in the Buckingham Palace fountain was dyed red.
Meanwhile, the Metropolitan Police said it is preparing to deploy thousands of extra officers in the capital over the bank holiday weekend to police further climate protests as well as other planned events.
It said it has been forced to request “a small number” of extra police officers from neighbouring forces for support.
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Matt Twist said: “As we head into the weekend, we are ready to respond to a number of different demonstrations by protest groups, including Extinction Rebellion.
“This past week, officers have worked hard to balance the rights of the protesters with those of the community, however on many occasions demonstrators’ actions became unreasonable and they caused or tried to cause serious disruption to the public and businesses.
“Activists have frustrated the policing response by using complex lock-on devices which take time for officers to safely remove.
“They have also used paint to deface London landmarks – action which we consider is totally unacceptable
“Like everyone else, Extinction Rebellion have the right to assemble and protest, however this is a qualified right, and they do not have the right to cause serious and unreasonable disruption to others.