June 8, 2020 / 4:02 AM / a month ago

UK anti-racism protests 'subverted by thuggery': PM Johnson

Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during a daily briefing to update on the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, at 10 Downing Street in London, Britain June 3, 2020. Andrew Parsons/10 Downing Street/Handout via REUTERS

LONDON (Reuters) - Anti-racism protests in Britain have been “subverted by thuggery”, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Sunday, warning those responsible would be held to account.

Tens of thousands took to the streets of London on Sunday, rallying for a second day running to condemn police brutality after the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. As numbers dwindled, some protesters tussled with police.

It came after 14 police officers were injured on Saturday, two seriously, when protesters clashed with mounted police near Johnson’s Downing Street residence.

“People have a right to protest peacefully and while observing social distancing but they have no right to attack the police,” Johnson said on Twitter.

“These demonstrations have been subverted by thuggery - and they are a betrayal of the cause they purport to serve. Those responsible will be held to account.”

Reporting by Kylie MacLellan; Editing by Daniel Wallis

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