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Extinction Rebellion protesters block one side of Dover dual carriageway

Protesters have been told they can demonstrate in the area cordoned off for their use, but risk arrest if they try to block further lanes.

Two major roads out of the port are expected to be blocked for four hours (Andrew Matthews/PA)
Two major roads out of the port are expected to be blocked for four hours (Andrew Matthews/PA)

By Michael Drummond, PA South East Correspondent

Extinction Rebellion protesters have occupied one side of a dual carriageway in an attempt to “blockade” the Port of Dover.

Two lanes at the busy Kent port have been fenced off and taken over by the environmental activists amid a heavy police presence.

Protesters have been told they can demonstrate in the area cordoned off for their use, but risk arrest if they try to block the eastbound lanes used by lorries to access the ferries.

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 is working with police to minimise disruption.

Activists began assembling near the ferry port this morning, ahead of the planned “blockade” at 11am.

Songs like The Clash’s I Fought The Law could be heard blaring out of a speaker set, with live music expected later as part of the demonstration.

Flags and signs adorn the seafront railings, with slogans like “Rebel for life” and “Climate breakdown kills”.

Chris Atkins from Extinction Rebellion Dover said: “As climate change develops, millions of ordinary Britons will face the real and growing threat of food shortages, hunger and starvation.

This crisis may seem far away now but given the dependency of the UK on food imports we are extremely vulnerable Chris Atkins, Extinction Rebellion Dover

“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.

“The Government must tell the truth and act now.”

The protesters are meeting from 10am, and an Extinction Rebellion spokesman said the group has assessed that the four-hour blockade between 11am and 3pm “will 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.”

A spokesman for the Port of Dover 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.”

PA

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