London airport protest ends

2016-09-06 15:26
Passengers look at departure screens at London City Airport in London after protestors blocked the runway. (Daniel Leal-Olivas, AFP)

Passengers look at departure screens at London City Airport in London after protestors blocked the runway. (Daniel Leal-Olivas, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

London - Flights resumed at London City Airport after hours of disruption on Tuesday caused by demonstrators who blocked a runway to protest expansion plans.

The protest disrupted travel from just before dawn until early afternoon. It ended after police arrested nine people on suspicion of aggravated trespass.

The group Black Lives Matter claimed responsibility for the protest on social media. It says expansion consigns the local community of Newham to environmental degradation. The group says the airport caters to people working in financial services - not the local population affected by its presence.

"It is an airport designed for the wealthy," the group said in a statement. "At the same time 40% of Newham's population struggle to survive on £20 000 or less. When black people in Britain are 28% more likely to be exposed to air pollution than their white counterparts, we know that environmental inequality is a racist crisis."

Hundreds of passengers were affected. By late morning, 16 flights were cancelled and 12 were delayed.

Among those affected was Casey Collins, a freelance management consultant from Devizes in Wiltshire who was supposed to be on a 07:35 flight to Luxembourg. At first, he thought the long lines were related to the IT problems being experienced by British Airways on Tuesday.

"The problem was that there were only two or three staff there and the queue was about 150m long, so it was impossible," he said. "Pretty soon they realised they would have to do a queue-walk to inform everyone. People were behaving themselves. They know it was not the airport's fault, but for a time it was a bit chaotic."

The demonstration was the second in as many months by the anti-racism activists, who blocked traffic leading to Heathrow and held other protests in several British cities. Activists say black men in Britain are unfairly targeted by law enforcement.

Last month's protest marked the fifth anniversary of the death of Mark Duggan, a 29-year-old black man shot by London police under disputed circumstances on August 4, 2011.

The killing sparked several nights of rioting in Britain's worst civil disorder in decades.

Read more on:    uk  |  racism

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.