Black Lives Matter protests take place in Belfast and Londonderry

Hundreds of people have attended a Black Lives Matter protest at Belfast’s Custom House Square.

By Jonathan McCambridge
Saturday, 6th June 2020, 4:39 pm
Black Lives Matter protests have taken place in Belfast
Black Lives Matter protests have taken place in Belfast

There was a significant police presence at the event and protesters were warned that evidence gathering was taking place and that notices would be issued for flouting lockdown rules.

Those in attendance raised a fist in memory of George Floyd and against racism. There were chants from the protesters including “No lives matter until black lives matter” and “No justice, no peace.”

An anti-racism rally also went ahead in Londonderry despite pleas for it to be called off due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Belfast protest took place at Custom House Square

The Black Lives Matter rally in Guildhall Square followed global anger at the killing of George Floyd in the US. It was organised by the NW Migrants’ Forum.

Earlier police had warned they were conducting checks on roads and at transport hubs ahead of the anti-racism protests.

They said anyone travelling to take part in a demonstration can expect to be stopped, advised to return home and could face a fine or court appearance.

Assistant Chief Constable Alan Todd issued a strong appeal to the public not to take part in protests this weekend.

Police maintained a presence at the Belfast protest

Mr Todd said any gathering of more than six people is against coronavirus regulations, as is travelling for a protest.

The Assistant Chief Constable also warned that if advice not to assemble is ignored, police may move to enforcement.

The Northern Ireland Assembly will show its support for Saturday’s day of solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement by lighting Parliament Buildings yellow.

Stormont Speaker Alex Maskey described the initiative as a way of demonstrating solidarity which complies with the coronavirus regulations.