U.K. seeks to expand police powers to target disruptive climate activists

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from The Washington Post,

Britain’s government is moving to crack down on environmental activists who have sparked widespread disruption in recent months, including gluing themselves to key roads and buildings, blocking bridges, hurling soup on a Vincent van Gogh painting and pouring cow’s milk across supermarket floors.

Home Secretary Suella Braverman this weekend touted a new Public Order Bill, which aims to curb activists by increasing police powers and creating new criminal offenses punishable with jail time and unlimited fines — though critics called the bill an attack on free speech that could risk over-policing in a democratic society.

She unveiled details of the proposed legislation in a series of tweets and an article in the Daily Mail newspaper on Saturday, calling the activists “thugs and vandals” who were engaged in “guerrilla tactics.”

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