Remembrance weekend under threat: Met Police 'drafts in extra THOUSAND officers and cancels annual leave' as it braces for trouble

Protesters in London

The Metropolitan Police plan to form a 'ring of steel' as an extra thousand officers are drafted in amid clashes between pro-Palestine protesters and Armistice Day parades

Georgina Cutler

By Georgina Cutler

Published: 10/11/2023

- 07:43

Updated: 10/11/2023

- 08:24

Senior public order officers are expected to give orders to stamp out any criminality or violence

The Metropolitan Police is said to have drafted in an extra thousand officers amid fears of clashes between pro-Palestine protesters and Armistice Day parades on Saturday.

Britain's most senior police officer, Sir Mark Rowley rejected calls to ban pro-Palestine rallies on Armistice Day - stating he legally had "no power" to stop it.

Over the course of the weekend, senior public order officers are expected to give orders to stamp out any criminality or violence.

More than 70,000 are set to travel to the capital to protest against Israel's assault on Gaza - just a few hours after a two-minute silence will be held at the Cenotaph.

WATCH NOW: Pro-Palestine protestors declare ‘the Met Police are with us!’ 

Met bosses have cancelled leave, boosted overtime and called in more officers from across Britain to reinforce their ranks, according to the Daily Mail.

Rowley said: "The laws created by Parliament are clear. There is no absolute power to ban protest, therefore there will be a protest this weekend.

"The law provides no mechanism to ban a static gathering of people.

"It contains legislation which allows us to impose conditions to reduce disruption and the risk of violence, and in the most extreme cases when no other tactics can work, for marches or moving protests to be banned."


He added that organisers of Saturday's march had shown "complete willingness to stay away from the Cenotaph and Whitehall and have no intention of disrupting the nation's remembrance events".

"Should this change, we've been clear we will use powers and conditions available to us to protect locations and events of national importance at all costs," Rowley said.

There are also fears that clashes could break out between pro-Palestine protesters and those planning to "team up" and "protect" the Cenotaph.

More than 1,000 people are set to travel to London to safeguard the memorial while a rally against Israeli attacks on Gaza takes place.

\u200bPro-Palestine protests

Pro-Palestine protesters in London


It comes after Suella Braverman criticised Police over “playing favourites” with protesters as she slammed Rowley yesterday.

The Home Secretary clashed with the Met commissioner following his decision to allow Saturday’s pro-Palestinian march to go ahead.

She accuses senior police officers of being "biased" on their policing of protests and implement "double standards" by taking a softer approach towards left-wing groups such as Black Lives Matter.

You may like