91-year-old climate protester arrested near port of Dover

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A 91-year-old man is among 10 people who have been arrested while taking part in a protest with climate activists Extinction Rebellion.

The pensioner was in a group of five, which also included an 83-year-old woman, who had broken away from a demonstration near the port of Dover that had been sanctioned by authorities in Kent.

Another five were detained after apparently attempting to superglue themselves to the A20 on the way into town.

Demonstrators had aimed to blockade Dover to highlight how vulnerable the UK’s food supply is because of the climate crisis.

Police have been removing Extinction Rebellion campaigners who have occupied the A20 close to Dover port
Climate activists glue themselves to A20

Chris Atkins from Extinction Rebellion Dover said: “As climate change develops, millions of ordinary Britons will face the real and growing threat of food shortages, hunger and starvation.

“Extreme storms and floods are already causing major crop failures across the world, with high temperatures also hitting livestock agriculture.

“This crisis may seem far away now but given the dependency of the UK on food imports we are extremely vulnerable.

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“The government must tell the truth and act now.”

Last week, MPs released a report that spelled out the risk to food security from rising global temperatures, as the UK imports 48% of the food it consumes.

Extinction Rebellion's protest in the port of Dover
Image: Extinction Rebellion’s protest in the port of Dover

Extinction Rebellion activists occupied one side of a dual carriageway in an attempt to stop traffic reaching the port, which is one of the main routes into the country for the UK’s imported food.

Protesters were told they could demonstrate in the area cordoned off for their use, but they risked arrest if they tried to block the eastbound lane used by lorries to access the ferries.

Sky’s Emma Birchley said she spoke to the 91-year-old just before he was arrested and he said the reason he was in Dover was because it was his generation that had caused the damage that led to climate change.

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Meanwhile, footage from the approach to Dover appeared to show a separate group sitting on a dual carriageway, refusing to move.

Twitter user Jade Evans said: “Carnage in Dover!… The amount of police cars they have here to remove them is causing more pollution than you know #ExtinctionRebellion”

The Port of Dover said it was working with police to cut disruption to a minimum.

The protesters said they had assessed the planned four-hour blockade would “not cause any disruption to vital supplies” such as medicine.

Mr Atkins added: “Extinction Rebellion appreciates the blockade will directly affect ordinary people and businesses, but we feel the action is necessary in order to call the government to action.”

A spokesman for the Port of Dover said: “We are aware of the protest plans and as a result, Port of Dover Police are working closely with Kent Police to ensure as minimal disruption as possible.”

It comes the day after millions took part in a worldwide climate strike and ahead of a United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York.

Extinction Rebellion: 91-year-old climate protester arrested near port of Dover

A 91-year-old man is among 10 people who have been arrested while taking part in a protest with climate activists Extinction Rebellion. The pensioner was in a group of five, which also included an 83-year-old woman, who had broken away from a demonstration near the port of Dover that had been sanctioned by authorities in Kent.

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