Tony Devenish has joined London Conservative MPs and fellow Assembly Members to write to the Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley to express their concerns about disruptive protests over the Remembrance Weekend. Protests on Armistice Day are provocative and disrespectful and should be stopped.
You can read the letter in full below.
Sir Mark Rowley
Metropolitan Police Commissioner
Dear Sir Mark,
We hope that this letter finds you well.
We are writing to you today as a collective group of elected London Conservative Members of Parliament and London Assembly Members to raise our profound concerns over the so-called protests planned for Armistice Day and Remembrance Weekend.
As the Prime Minister has rightly outlined today, protests on Armistice Day are provocative and disrespectful to those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice for our country and the freedoms we all cherish today. Such disrespect near the Cenotaph and other memorials would be an affront to the British public and the values we stand for as Londoners and as a country.
We are particularly concerned by the increasingly negative impact these protests are having on people living, working and visiting Central London, the dramatic rise in antisemitism and anti-Muslim hate crimes which has left many of our constituents feeling unsafe, and the detrimental impact on police resources in our communities and serving officers across Greater London.
Whilst we do respect people's right to lawfully protest and the operational independence of the police, we do not believe that these so-called protests should be allowed to happen next weekend and we are calling on you to please use all your powers as Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police to prevent this disruption from happening. We would also like to know please whether any permissions have been granted for protests?
Like many Londoners, we do not have confidence in Mayor Sadiq Khan as the Police and Crime Commissioner for London to show the required leadership on this issue, who after seven and a half years in power, has failed spectacularly to keep Londoners safe and failed to use the significant Government funding available to recruit over 1,000 more of the hardworking police officers that you and London needs. You will be aware that the Metropolitan Police was the only force in the country that failed to hit its recruitment target.
We sincerely hope that the Metropolitan Police and Westminster Council will now use all the available powers at their disposal to ensure that all Londoners and members of the public feel safe both on Remembrance Weekend and beyond. We write this letter in hope and support for the police to achieve this shared endeavour.
Members of Parliament: Nickie Aiken, Gareth Bacon, Bob Blackman, Eliot Colburn, Sir David Evennett, Mike Freer, Louie French, Greg Hands, Paul Scully, David Simmons CBE, Steve Tuckwell, Theresa Villiers.
Assembly Members: Tony Devenish, Peter Fortune, Neil Garratt, Susan Hall, Nick Rogers.