March 31, 2009 : G20 protests in the City and beyond
The leaders of the world's 22 largest economies are meeting in London this week to 'restore confidence' in the failed capitalist system. Meanwhile, banks and companies in the City are being boarded up and employees are being told to come to work in plain cloths. But is it that easy to hide?
Different groups and campaigns are planning different protests and actions over various, yet interrelated, issues. What they all have in common is disillusionment and anger at the system that the G20 summit represents. A better representation, however, may be London's financial district, or the Square Mile, where many of the protests and actions are expected to take place. A detailed map of the Square Mile, with numerous focal points, has been produced and is being circulated widely among activists and protesters. Below is a list of the main (known) protests and actions planned for this week.
The 'Squaring Up to the Square Mile' map can be found here.
Wednesday, 1st April:
- Financial Fools Day and G20 Meltdown at the Bank of England, from 11am at different stations (Moorgate, Liverpool St, London Bridge, Cannon Street).
Reclaiming the City, thrusting into the very belly of the beast: the Bank of England.
"We can't pay, we won't pay and we are taking to the streets."
"Capitalism has been heating up our world for years, melting the icecaps, burning up the rainforests, pushing the planet to tipping point. Now we're going to put the heat on them. At the London Summit , the G20 ministers are trying to get away with the biggest April Fools trick of all time. Their tax-dodging, bonus-guzzling, pension-pinching, unregulated free market world in meltdown, and those fools think we're going to bail them out. They've gotta be joking!"
For more information, see www.g-20meltdown.org
- Climate Camp hits the City, at the European Climate Exchange in Bishopgate from 12:30 noon.
"Stopping Carbon Trading... Because nature doesn't do bailouts...
"First the city traders speculated with our homes, jobs and money with disastrous results. Now they are speculating with our climate and the very future of life on earth and once again our governments are cheering them on... Dont let them get away with it: join our camp in the Square Mile! Bring a pop-up tent, sleeping bag, wind turbine, mobile cinema, action plans and ideas..."
For more information, see www.climatecamp.org.uk/g20
- Fossil Fools Day: "Take aim at your local fossil fool and help speed up the end of the fossil fuel empire, and the beginnings of a more just and sustainable world."
For more information, see www.fossilfoolsdayofaction.org/2009/
(Early success: BP, which was going to celebrate its centenary with cocktails and canapes at the British Museum, has cancelled the party allegedly due to 'traffic disruption'.
Thursday, 2nd April:
Shut down the G20: Autonomous actions and blockades against and around the G20 Summit, which will be held at the ExCeL centre in East London, from early morning.
"We're going to bang on their hotel doors @ the Excel Centre, Canning Town, to deliver our message of a world beyond capitalism." For more information, see www.g-20meltdown.org
Friday, 3rd April:
- 'Ditch the Dirty Development': People & Planet protest at the Royal Bank of Scotland in Bishopgate, London. For more details, see http://peopleandplanet.org/ditchdirtydevelopment
And coming soon...
Friday 3rd - Saturday 4th April: Mobilisation against the NATO Summit - Strasbourg, France and Kehl, Germany.
"NATO is having its 60th birthday party we will be 'celebrating' with them!"