Extinction Rebellion activists storm May Fair Hotel during energy summit

Robert Roffulo

Table of Contents Are you staying at the May Fair Hotel and did you see the Extinction Rebellion protest today? Eco ‘hooligans’ will be BANNED from chaining themselves to buildings and blocking roads Extinction Rebellion eco-zealots stormed a five-star central London hotel, glued themselves together in the lobby and sprayed black paint […]

Extinction Rebellion eco-zealots stormed a five-star central London hotel, glued themselves together in the lobby and sprayed black paint across the front in fresh anti-oil protests. 

Disguised in hi-vis jackets, the eco-protesters used ladders to climb on top of the entrance to £350-a-night May Fair Hotel, where they unfurled a banner with ‘End Oil Colonialism’.

Video showed a group of activists lying down inside the building shouting the same phrase, while others held banners outside with the words ‘Justice for Africa’. 

The hotel, just a short walk from Buckingham Palace, is currently hosting the annual Africa E&P Summit and Exhibition.

According to the event’s website, the summit aims to ‘bring together Africa’s upstream industry for a unique event shaped for companies active in Africa’s oil and energy game’.

Representatives from a dozen African governments attending the event, while speakers include Somalian resources minister Mohamed Hashi Arabey Abdi, President and CEO of Africa Oil Corp, Keith Hill, and representatives from oil giant Shell.

US energy giant ExxonMobil and French petrol firm TotalEnergies are listed as sponsors for the summitt, which costs as much as £500 to watch remotely with an online ticket.

Police taped-off an area around the hotel’s entrance during the protest, with Scotland Yard saying some protesters had glued themselves together inside the building and police ‘debonding teams’ are currently attempting to unstick them

The Met Police say six people have now been arrested.  Meanwhile, an XR source told MailOnline: ‘Arrests have been made and I believe all protestors have now been removed.’

Eco-activists have entered a swanky five-star Mayfair hotel as part of an anti-oil protest

The group have also unfurled a banner with 'End Oil Colonialism' across of the front of the May Fair Hotel on Stratton Street

The group have also unfurled a banner with ‘End Oil Colonialism’ across of the front of the May Fair Hotel on Stratton Street

According to the event's website, the summit aims to 'bring together Africa’s upstream industry for a unique event shaped for companies active in Africa’s oil and energy game'

According to the event’s website, the summit aims to ‘bring together Africa’s upstream industry for a unique event shaped for companies active in Africa’s oil and energy game’

Video shows protesters lying down inside the building shouting the phrase, while others hold banners outside with the words 'Justice for Africa'

Video shows protesters lying down inside the building shouting the phrase, while others hold banners outside with the words ‘Justice for Africa’

Two members of the group were seen lying down inside the hotel in central London beside a suitcase saying 'Just for Africa'

Two members of the group were seen lying down inside the hotel in central London beside a suitcase saying ‘Just for Africa’

Protesters managed to get on to a balcony next to the hotel and stayed up there with a banner with the words 'The Planet Can't Breathe'

Protesters managed to get on to a balcony next to the hotel and stayed up there with a banner with the words ‘The Planet Can’t Breathe’

Extinction Rebellion protesters demonstrating at the May Fair Hotel in London today. The group were seen holding a sign up saying Justice for Africa

Extinction Rebellion protesters demonstrating at the May Fair Hotel in London today. The group were seen holding a sign up saying Justice for Africa

A Met Police spokesperson said: ‘We were called at 7.18am on Tuesday, 17 May to reports of criminal damage to a building at Stratton Street, W1.

‘Officers attended. At the scene a group of protesters had glued themselves together and paint had been sprayed on a building.

‘The police de-bonding team and local officers remain on scene.  Six people were arrested on suspicion of criminal damage.

‘They were taken to west London police stations where they remain at this time. All protestors have left the scene.’

Meanwhile, taking to Twitter to announce today’s protest, Extinction Rebellion Sheffield wrote on their website: ‘A coalition of environmental groups including XR Sheffield and XRY Sheffield disrupt the entrance to the Africa Energies Summit at the Mayfair Hotel.

Are you staying at the May Fair Hotel and did you see the Extinction Rebellion protest today? 

Contact us: [email protected]

‘Activists drop an ‘END OIL COLONIALISM’ banner from the entrance of the hotel.’ 

A spokesperson for XR said: ‘On Tuesday May 17 a coalition of groups including Extinction Rebellion Africa, Sustaining the Wild Coast, StopEACOP, Africans Rising, The Green Connection, Oceans Not Oil, Jubilee for Climate, 350.org and Greenpeace disrupted the Africa Energies Summit, a high-level conference attended by oil executives and African heads of state, who will also meet for ‘top-level networking’.

‘Three people gained access to the conference suite in the 5-star May Fair Hotel in London that is hosting the Africa Energies Summit, billed as the ‘go to conference for Africa’s energy industry.’ 

‘They hung banners saying ‘End Oil Colonialism’ and ‘Justice for Africa’ from the £351-a-night hotel’s porch and lobby, blocking the delegates’ entrances and disrupting proceedings with audio recordings of African activists’ protestations about new oil deals.

‘Several of the protesters gained access to the conference room itself inside the 5-star May Fair Hotel, London. Others used loudspeakers to broadcast voice recordings of people from South Africa, Namibia, Nigeria, the DRC and Uganda explaining how oil projects are destroying rather than benefiting their communities.’

Meanwhile, Cathy Allen from Extinction Rebellion Global Support, said: ‘Africa has contributed just 2% to global emissions to date, while almost half the continent cannot access electricity. 

‘Yet the impacts of climate change throughout the continent are already brutal. How can we stand by and watch these money games in Mayfair?’

Speaking at the scene, one protester, dressed in a suit and doing a piece to camera, said: ‘We are not seeing any kind of development (in Africa). That’s the line they are going to be spinning.

The group hung banners saying 'End Oil Colonialism' and 'Justice for Africa' from the £351-a-night hotel's porch and lobby

The group hung banners saying ‘End Oil Colonialism’ and ‘Justice for Africa’ from the £351-a-night hotel’s porch and lobby

Extinction Rebellion protesters demonstrating at the May Fair Hotel in London.  The group were seen outside the hotel after a number of activists gained access to the top of the entrance to the hotel

Extinction Rebellion protesters demonstrating at the May Fair Hotel in London.  The group were seen outside the hotel after a number of activists gained access to the top of the entrance to the hotel

Police talk to an Extinction Rebellion protester during their demonstrating at the May Fair Hotel in London. Police say no arrests have been made so far

Police talk to an Extinction Rebellion protester during their demonstrating at the May Fair Hotel in London. Police say no arrests have been made so far

Taking to Twitter to announce today's protest, Extinction Rebellion Sheffield wrote on their website: 'A coalition of environmental groups including XR Sheffield and XRY Sheffield disrupt the entrance to the Africa Energies Summit at the Mayfair Hotel

Taking to Twitter to announce today’s protest, Extinction Rebellion Sheffield wrote on their website: ‘A coalition of environmental groups including XR Sheffield and XRY Sheffield disrupt the entrance to the Africa Energies Summit at the Mayfair Hotel

Police are at the scene and have taped-off an area around the hotel's entrance. The Met Police say some protesters have glued themselves together inside the building and police 'debonding teams' are currently attempting to unstick them. No arrests have yet been made

Police are at the scene and have taped-off an area around the hotel’s entrance. The Met Police say some protesters have glued themselves together inside the building and police ‘debonding teams’ are currently attempting to unstick them. No arrests have yet been made

Sponsors include US energy giant ExxonMobil and French petrol firm TotalEnergies, while BP also sponsored last year's event, which took place at the same hotel. Online tickets - allowing people to view the event remotely - cost as much as £500 per person. Pictured: Protesters hold signs outside the hotel during today's protest

Sponsors include US energy giant ExxonMobil and French petrol firm TotalEnergies, while BP also sponsored last year’s event, which took place at the same hotel. Online tickets – allowing people to view the event remotely – cost as much as £500 per person. Pictured: Protesters hold signs outside the hotel during today’s protest

In a statement, XR said: ‘Several of the protesters gained access to the conference room itself inside the 5-star May Fair Hotel, London. Others used loudspeakers to broadcast voice recordings of people from South Africa, Namibia, Nigeria, the DRC and Uganda explaining how oil projects are destroying rather than benefiting their communities.’

Guests luggage being moved as Extinction Rebellion protesters demonstrate at the May Fair Hotel in London

Guests luggage being moved as Extinction Rebellion protesters demonstrate at the May Fair Hotel in London

Guests arrive at the hotel in central London, a short walk from Buckingham Palace, during protests by the group Extinction Rebellion

Guests arrive at the hotel in central London, a short walk from Buckingham Palace, during protests by the group Extinction Rebellion

After the initial protests, XR activists sat outside the hotel on the pavement as police attempted to unstick eco-zealots who had glued themselves together inside the hotel lobby

After the initial protests, XR activists sat outside the hotel on the pavement as police attempted to unstick eco-zealots who had glued themselves together inside the hotel lobby 

‘As has been going on in Africa for literally hundreds of years now, this is conscious underdevelopment of Africa. And it is absolutely terrible. 

‘We are trying to send a really clear message that our generation, the people coming up now, we don’t believe a country has to grow forever. That is completely insane. That is greed. 

‘A conference like this should not be taking place. If it is it should all be about justice for Africa.’ 

Organisers behind the event, along with Radisson, who operate the May Fair hotel, have been contact for a comment. 

It comes as the eco-group vowed to send ‘millions of people onto the streets’ in defiance of a new Government crackdown on disruptive ‘guerrilla protests’.

The climate change protest group said it is ‘foolish’ for ministers to think announcing new ‘curbs’ will stop people ‘taking to the streets to demand their Government act to ensure a safe future for people in the UK and around the world’, as it set out its intention for action from September 10.

It comes after the Public Order Bill was unveiled as part of the Queen’s Speech, with harsher sentences and new criminal offences for those involved in some types of protest.

Disguised in hi-vis jackets, the eco-protesters have used ladders to climb on top of the entrance to £350-a-night May Fair Hotel, where they have unfurled a banner with 'End Oil Colonialism'. Pictured: Inside the May Fair hotel in London

Disguised in hi-vis jackets, the eco-protesters have used ladders to climb on top of the entrance to £350-a-night May Fair Hotel, where they have unfurled a banner with ‘End Oil Colonialism’. Pictured: Inside the May Fair hotel in London

The five-star hotel, which is just a walk across Green Park from Buckingham Palace, costs around £350-a-night. Pictured: One of the bedrooms inside the hotel

The five-star hotel, which is just a walk across Green Park from Buckingham Palace, costs around £350-a-night. Pictured: One of the bedrooms inside the hotel

The hotel (pictured: The bar inside the hotel) is hosting an oil summit. According to the event's website, the summit aims to 'bring together Africa's upstream industry for a unique event shaped for companies active in Africa's oil and energy game'

The hotel (pictured: The bar inside the hotel) is hosting an oil summit. According to the event’s website, the summit aims to ‘bring together Africa’s upstream industry for a unique event shaped for companies active in Africa’s oil and energy game’

The Bill seeks to outlaw tactics in England and Wales such as protesters ‘locking on’ to public transport infrastructure or gluing themselves to roads, which have been adopted by campaign groups such as Insulate Britain.

It will carry a maximum penalty of six months and an unlimited fine. Stop and search powers will allow police to detain campaigners carrying bike locks and other equipment designed to make themselves difficult to remove.

A new offence will also be introduced to specifically ban the obstruction of key national infrastructure such as airports, railways and newspaper printing presses, which will be punishable by up to 12 months in prison and an unlimited fine.

The move represents a bid to revive measures which were previously put forward under the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill but had to be scrapped after being knocked back by the House of Lords.

In a sign of the Government’s determination to drive through the measures, officials said the legislation is set to be introduced in Parliament on Wednesday.

Extinction Rebellion (XR) has vowed to send 'millions of people onto the streets' in defiance of a new Government crackdown on disruptive 'guerrilla protests'

Extinction Rebellion (XR) has vowed to send ‘millions of people onto the streets’ in defiance of a new Government crackdown on disruptive ‘guerrilla protests’

It comes after the Public Order Bill was unveiled as part of the Queen's Speech, with harsher sentences and new criminal offences for those involved in some types of protest

It comes after the Public Order Bill was unveiled as part of the Queen’s Speech, with harsher sentences and new criminal offences for those involved in some types of protest

An activist from the Extinction Rebellion, a global environmental movement, smashes a window at HSBC headquarters during a protest in Canary Wharf last year

An activist from the Extinction Rebellion, a global environmental movement, smashes a window at HSBC headquarters during a protest in Canary Wharf last year

Eco ‘hooligans’ will be BANNED from chaining themselves to buildings and blocking roads

Police will be given powers to stop eco ‘hooligans’ blocking roads and inflicting misery on motorists, under plans announced yesterday.

A Public Order Bill to tackle disruptive action by groups such as Extinction Rebellion was unveiled in the Queen’s Speech.

The Government had attempted to bring in the measures in January, but they were blocked by Labour and others in the House of Lords

A criminal offence of ‘locking on’ will be created to prevent activists chaining themselves to buildings, vehicles and other protesters.

It will carry a maximum penalty of six months and an unlimited fine.

Stop and search powers will allow police to detain campaigners carrying bike locks and other equipment designed to make themselves difficult to remove.

A new offence will also be introduced to specifically ban the obstruction of key national infrastructure such as airports, railways and newspaper printing presses, which will be punishable by up to 12 months in prison and an unlimited fine.

Charlie Waterhouse, from XR, said: ‘It is foolish to think that announcing new curbs in the Queen’s Speech will stop people taking to the streets to demand their Government act to ensure a safe future for people in the UK and around the world.

‘As we in Extinction Rebellion know full well: what we do works. It’s worked countless times before. It has worked to give us weekends and the vote, human rights and freedom. And it will work again.

‘To be a bystander is not enough…

‘So Boris Johnson and Priti Patel, we thank you. Our organisations were set up to break the law to drive positive change. Your actions show that we are winning.’

The Bill will create new criminal offences of ‘locking on’ and going equipped to ‘lock on’ to other people, objects or buildings in order to cause ‘serious disruption’, with a maximum penalty of up to six months’ imprisonment, an unlimited fine, or both.

A new offence of interfering with key national infrastructure – such as airports, railways and printing presses – will carry a maximum sentence of 12 months in prison, an unlimited fine, or both.

It will also become illegal to obstruct major transport works, such as the HS2 high-speed rail link, again punishable by up to six months in prison, an unlimited fine, or both.

The Bill will also extend stop-and-search powers so the police can seize articles related to the new offences, while new serious disruption prevention orders will be available for those who repeatedly cause criminal disruption.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said ministers are determined to prevent protesters bringing the country to ‘a grinding halt’, adding: ‘The law-abiding, responsible majority have had enough of anti-social, disruptive protests carried out by a self-indulgent minority who seem to revel in causing mayhem and misery for the rest of us.’

Ms Patel denied she is attempting to erode the right to protest, describing it as a ‘fundamental right… that we all cherish dearly’ and dismissing such claims put forward by opponents as a ‘lazy excuse’.

  • Are you staying at the Mayfair Hotel and did you see the Extinction Rebellion protest today?: Contact us: [email protected] 

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10824189/Extinction-Rebellion-activists-storm-Mayfair-Hotel-energy-summit.html

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