Climate change activists from Extinction Rebellion involved in a “blockade” of the busy Dover port are reported to have glued themselves to streets and have been told they could face arrest if they leave a designated area, police have said.
Two main roads out of the port are expected to be blocked for four hours, the environmental group has said.
A video shared on social media just before 11.30am showed a handful of protesters sitting and lying down in front of a long line of cars on a section of the A20, with reports that they had superglued themselves to the street.
Protesters have been told they risk arrest if they try to block the eastbound lanes giving lorries access to the ferries. Emma Arnold, one of the protesters, claimed on Twitter that she had been told by police that she would face arrest if she left an area that had been cordoned off for the demonstrators.
A spokesperson for Kent police said: “Following consultation with partner agencies, including the Port of Dover and Highways England, a designated area has been created in Townwall Street to allow a peaceful protest.
“The event organisers have been notified of this and, in order to ensure the protest remains peaceful, a small number of attendees have been advised that choosing to leave the designated area to cause disruption, or inciting others to cause disruption, could lead to proportionate enforcement action.”
Two lanes at the busy Kent port have been fenced off and taken over by the environmental activists amid a heavy police presence, according to the Press Association.
The No Food on a Dying Planet action at the Kent port is expected to be mirrored across the Channel by other Extinction Rebellion groups.
The Port of Dover said it was working with police to minimise disruption. A spokesman said: “We are aware of the protest plans and as a result, Port of Dover police are working closely with Kent police to ensure as minimal disruption as possible.”
Chris Atkins from Extinction Rebellion Dover urged the government to “tell the truth and act now”.
Atkins said: “As climate change develops, millions of ordinary Britons will face the real and growing threat of food shortages, hunger and starvation.
“Extreme storms and floods are already causing major crop failures across the world, with high temperatures also hitting livestock agriculture. This crisis may seem far away now but given the dependency of the UK on food imports we are extremely vulnerable.”
An Extinction Rebellion spokesman said the group had assessed that the four-hour blockade from 11am would not cause any disruption to vital supplies such as medicine.
He added: “Extinction Rebellion appreciates the blockade will directly affect ordinary people and businesses, but we feel the action is necessary in order to call the government to action.”