David Lammy's deep concern by scenes at Bristol 'Kill the Bill' protest

27 March 2021, 17:03 | Updated: 27 March 2021, 17:41

By Seán Hickey

David Lammy hit out against 'heavy handed' police officers, but also against protesters 'piling into Bristol' and 'stoking' tension.

David Lammy has been in opposition to the Police and Crime Bill for a while and lobbied his party to vote against it last week. He pointed to images from "Kill the Bill" protests in Bristol as evidence of the problems the legislation poses.

"When you look at some of the handling of these protests by the police you've got to ask,'are these powers necessary?'"

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Equally, David noted that the Mayor of Bristol has revealed that some protesters came from outside the city to join in the unrest. "How do you serve your purpose by piling into Bristol and stoking it?" D

As MP for Tottenham, David recalled how "people came from miles away to loot and to steal and burn people's homes and shops and cars," during the 2011 riots and compared the influx of demonstrators in Bristol as an equally unproductive response.

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He again turned back onto the actions of the police, telling listeners that "it looks severe, really, really heavy handed."

David went on to condemn Boris Johnson and Priti Patel's responses to the protests. "How are the Prime Minister and Priti Patel calming this down?" He wondered.

He implored demonstrators to "protest peacefully. Civil disobedience can be done peacefully."

"Of course we don't need these powers" he accepted, but added that "you can't be helping if you're adding to this toxic energy of violence."

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