Police have released images of 35 people they want to speak to in connection with violence at protests in London this month.
Clashes have broken out in the capital in recent weeks, where there have been demonstrations in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and among people guarding statues in the city.
The Metropolitan Police said they are seeking people in relation to a number of violent public order offences which occurred during demonstrations between June 3 and 13.
Commander Bas Javid said while the vast majority of people had protested peacefully, ‘a small minority have attended with the sole purpose of attacking police officers, or violently confronting other protesters’.
He said almost 230 arrests have been made so far, 128 of which related to Saturday’s gathering which saw far-right demonstrators clash with officers near the Palace of Westminster and Trafalgar Square.
Police have released images of 35 people they want to speak to in connection with violence at protests in London this month
Mr Javid appealed to the public for their help to identify people.
He said: ‘We are now asking for the public’s help in identifying people, who we need to talk to about the violence seen at the protests. If you have any information, no matter how small, please get in touch.’
Police have been looking through hours of CCTV, officers’ body worn video and footage circulated on social media to identify people who might have been involved in violence, the Met said.
The force added there is a ‘high likelihood’ they will be releasing more images of others wanted in connection with the clashes ‘in due course’.
Demonstrators have flouted social distancing rules to flood the streets across Britain in protests against racial injustice and police brutality.
While many protests have remained peaceful, police and demonstrators have been pictured suffering injuries during brawls at demonstrations.
Activists, some wearing face coverings or face masks as a precautionary measure against COVID-19, hold placards as they attend a Black Lives Matter protest march to Trafalgar Square in London on June 12. There is no suggestion those pictured here and below are wanted by police
Officers carrying protective shields stand guard after a flare hits the pavement during the anti-racism rally in London, June 7
A demonstrator lights a flare and holds it in the air as the anti-racism protests continued in Parliament Square, June 7
A firework is set off as clashes take place between police officers and Black Lives Matter demonstrators in Whitehall, June 7
Statues and monuments to controversial figures from Britain’s imperial past have become the focal point of many demonstrations since a statue of 17th century slave trader Edward Colston was torn down in Bristol and dumped in the harbour.
Today’s police appeal comes after the Prime Minister said protesters desecrating war memorials will face tough new laws in the wake of demonstrations across Britain.
Boris Johnson yesterday used Prime Ministers Questions to warn that attacks on public property will be ‘met with the full force of the law’.
Ministers are believed to be considering sentences of up to 10 years for the worst offenders, after the Cenotaph and a statue of wartime leader Winston Churchill were targeted by Black Lives Matter protesters.
Additionally, a far-right protester was later jailed for 14 days for urination next to a memorial to a police officer killed in a terror attack on Parliament, while at a demo ostensibly trying to protect statues.
Mr Johnson told the Commons: ‘I can also confirm we are looking at new ways in which we may legislate against vandalism of war memorials.’
People taking part in a Black Lives Matter protest in Marble Arch, London, June 13. Black Lives Matter protests erupted worldwide following the death of George Floyd , 46, who died after police officer Derek Chauvin put his knee on his neck in Minneapolis on May 25 for nine minutes
The police appeal comes after Boris Johnson used Prime Ministers Questions to warn that attacks on public property will be ‘met with the full force of the law’
Ministers are believed to be considering sentences of up to 10 years for the worst offenders, after the Cenotaph and a statue of wartime leader Winston Churchill were targeted by Black Lives Matter protesters
Mr Johnson told the Commons: ‘I can also confirm we are looking at new ways in which we may legislate against vandalism of war memorials’
Mr Johnson also insisted he is a ‘huge admirer’ of one of his aides who has previously questioned the existence of institutional racism and hit out at a ‘culture of grievance’ among anti-racism campaigners.
Downing Street advisers are said to be keen for the PM to take high-profile stands on cultural issues, focusing on improving life chances rather than bowing to pressure from the Left.
The choice of Munira Mirza, the head Mr Johnson’s policy unit, to set up the new race commission appears to be a sign of the government’s approach.
Supporters say she is an advocate of data-driven policies, but campaigners and Labour MPs say she is a denier of institutional racism and should not be playing a key role in the response to the BLM protests.
They also raised concerns over her alleged decision to give a role to Trevor Phillips, the former head of the Equalities and Human Rights Commission, who has angered some with past comments on British Asian communities.
Supporters of Munira Mirza say she is an advocate of data-driven policies, but campaigners and Labour MPs say she is a denier of institutional racism
The Prime Minister was asked if he agreed with Dr Mirza on her ‘culture of grievance’ remark, to which he replied in the Commons: ‘I am a huge admirer of Dr Munira Mirza, who is a brilliant thinker about these issues and we are certainly going to proceed with a new cross-governmental commission to look at racism and discrimination.
‘It will be a very thorough piece of work looking at discrimination in health, in education, in the criminal justice system.
‘It is clear from the Black Lives Matter march and all representations that we’ve had that more work needs to be done.’