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BBC: Home Secretary to crack down on ‘disruptive’ protests with new bill

Home Secretary Suella Braverman says the new Public Order Bill being put to MPs this week will stop demonstrators holding the public “to ransom”. But activists said they would not be intimidated by law changes aimed at “silencing non-violent people”. More than 350 Just Stop Oil protesters – demanding halts to all new oil and gas licences and consents – have been arrested in London since the start of October, according to Home Office figures. The new legislation – which will be put to MPs next week – will also see jail sentences of up to six months or unlimited fines for protesters accused of “locking-on” to people, objects or buildings. It would create a new criminal offence of interfering with infrastructure, which would carry sentences of up to 12 months in prison. In addition, police will be given new powers to take a more “proactive” approach to some protests. […]

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The Guardian: Thinktank that briefed against XR given $30k by ExxonMobil in 2017

Report shows Policy Exchange, which is registered as a charity, called for criminalisation of climate group, previously received money from oil firm. A thinktank registered as a charity that received money from an oil company, later published a report that advised the government to criminalise Extinction Rebellion in its tough new crime laws. Several Conservative MPs and peers cited the 2019 report by Policy Exchange in parliament and the home secretary, Priti Patel, repeated its claims about the climate campaigners being “extremists”. Many of the report’s recommendations, including “to strengthen the ability of police to place restrictions on planned protest and deal more effectively with mass law-breaking tactics”, later appeared in the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Act. Source: Thinktank that briefed against XR given $30k by ExxonMobil in 2017 | Extinction Rebellion | The Guardian