Anonymous 1,000-strong crowd march on Parliament in "Operation Vendetta"
Crowds of masked protesters marched down Whitehall on Parliament in an anarchist anti-government protest, with ten people arrested for public disorder offences.
Operation Vendetta, organised by hacktivist group Anonymous, started in Trafalgar Square at 6pm.
The swarms of anonymous protesters stopped traffic as they moved down Whitehall, with some demonstrators laying down in the middle of the road.
By 10.30pm, traffic was able to flow through as protesters were moved onto the grass outside of Parliament.
The event was part of “Operation Vendetta,” a worldwide day of demonstrations and cyber attacks to coincide with the failed 1605 Gunpowder Plot to blow up the Houses of Parliament.
Parallel protests also took part place in Washington DC.
Anonymous’ statement on Operation Vendetta:
Anonymous will march on The Houses of Parliament peacefully and unarmed. This is the centrepiece of a worldwide Anonymous operation of global strength and solidarity, a warning to all governments worldwide that if they keep trying to censor, cut, imprison, or silence the free world or the free internet they will not be our governments for much longer.
Change is coming.
The Demands of the UK collective: Stop the education, health and welfare cuts; Cut the causes of the problems, don’t cause more. ‘Austerity measures’ targeting vulnerable areas of the economy and society must be stopped.
Bank support and bailouts using taxpayers’ money must end. Recognise the internet as an independent, self-governing, self-managing entity; An entity that is not, and will never be, controlled. The rights of internet users to protect their privacy must be respected.
Web monitoring programs including, but are not limited to - the Communications Data Bill CM 8359 should be withdrawn and no more should be proposed. 71% of UK Citizens are against the bill, and its £1.8 billion cost could be better spent. Suppression of free speech and censorship of the internet must never be allowed.
FREE ANONS; Activists held as political prisoners must be released, including Richard O’Dwyer, Julian Assange, PayPal 14, Jeremy Hammond, Topiary and the 4 anons of the UK that will stand trial on November 7th.
They must be pardoned and their full civil liberties restored. Whistleblowers should be protected, not punished. Defend the right to protest. The Distributed Denial of Service must be recognised as a legitimate form of protest, as long as an aim and reason has been specified by the protestors.
Recently, we have seen the privatisation of every aspect of government and the placing of companies that put profit before justice into positions of power. This is immoral and unethical. All corporations are quickly moving on to private land or government safe zones - this is an attack on freedom of speech and we will not consent to designated protest zones.
Search for us, and you will find us.
Estimates for the size of the march vary, with the police putting it at around 300 and others saying there were as many as 1,500.