Tar Sands protest welcomes Canadian PM

13th June 2013

Five protesters were arrested during Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper’s visit to Parliament. The Met said they were held after a protest at the Sovereign’s Entrance.

The protest sparked a major security alert.

Police raced through the Palace of Westminster to the House of Lords as demonstrators hurled oil at the Sovereign’s Entrance.

Meanwhile another group clambered onto the roof where they filmed themselves making a statement and then posted it online.

Protesters wanted to highlight plans to extract tar sands oil in Canada for export to Europe, which they argue will damage the environment.

Protester Danny Chivers was amongst those who gathered in Parliament Square. He said: “Harper has been invited to speak here but he is a completely inappropriate choice of speaker.

At about midday two women wearing T-shirts with slogans saying “Stop Harper” and “Respect Indiginous Rights” approached the gate the Queen uses to enter Parliament.

They threw oil on the floor and smeared it on their faces before attempting to chain themselves to a gate.

Police said they arrested two women on suspicion of criminal damage.

Videos posted online appeared to show other protesters on the roof of Parliament.

A female protester in the film tells the camera: “We’re on top of the Houses of Parliament and we are looking across to where we believe Stephen Harper is going to be.

“We’re hoping to get into the room and let the Lords and the Peers of the UK and hopefully the Canadian press know that we should get dirty tar sands out of Europe.”

Two men and a woman were later arrested for trespassing on a protected area.