‘Black Lives Matter’ Closes London City Airport

The demonstrators chained themselves to a tripod they erected on the runway in an attempt to protest the high air pollution that impacts black lives.

All flights were canceled at the London City Airport after nine protesters from Black Lives Matter U.K. chained themselves to the tarmac.

Police were called early Tuesday morning to the airport after receiving reports that demonstrators were blocking the runway — and hence preventing airplanes from taking off or landing  by locking themselves to a tripod. They had reportedly evaded security by using a rubber dinghy and even swimming to cross the docks.

The black rights group posted a statement saying this latest stance was taken to emphasize the negative environmental impact of air pollution on the lives of African communities all over the world.

“As the largest per capita contributor to global temperature change and yet among the least vulnerable to its deadly effects, the U.K. leads in ensuring that our climate crisis is a racist crisis,” the group said in a statement.

The group also posted multiple tweets stating how pollution negatively impacts sub-Saharan countries.






They further said the planned expansion of London City Airport will consign the huge number of black people in Newham to further “deterioration of their environment.”

The airport caters to many bankers and business professionals due to its proximity to Canary Wharf in London Docklands. The black rights group said the protest also aimed to highlight the economic disparity of the users of the airport and the poor people who lived in the vicinity where it is based.

Police said seven out of the nine protesters were detained on suspicion of aggravated trespass, being unlawfully air-side and violating airport bylaws.

The airport has issued a statement regarding the incident.



Hordes of people awaiting their plane in seemingly never-ending lines expressed their disapproval over the protest.

Last year a record 4.3 million people used the airport.

Banner and thumbnail credit: Reuters, Stephanie Keith 

View Comments

Recommended For You