The BBC is covering the eviction of Occupy London Stock Exchange protestors from their encampment outside St. Paul’s Cathedral. The encampment has been in place since October 15.
The Christian think tank Ekklesia, which supports the Occupy movement, is also covering the eviction.
Police have moved in to forcibly remove Occupy anti-corporate greed and injustice protesters from the their site at St Paul’s Cathedral in London.
OLSX has organised a live video feed of proceedings as they unfold.
Occupy LSX was refused permission to appeal against a High Court decision to allow eviction at the Court of Appeal last week. The camp, which has received international support, has been in place since 15 October 2011.
Christians and others have vowed to maintain and non-violent ring of prayerful protest as the eviction takes place – after hundreds pledged to the act of witness.
As police moved in, one protester told journalists: “This is not the end. The movement goes on. I plan to occupy Buckingham Palace next.”
Another commented: “Our greatest achievement has been to transform the life of many homeless people who have been given a function within our community.”
An observer said on Twitter that “St Paul’s Cathedral Churchyard is eerily floodlit, as hundreds of police and bailiffs encircle the campsite.”
Another remarked: “Banks create global economic meltdown, [and there is] not one arrest by police. Occupy protest about it, [and the] police move in. What a great country we live in.”
Protesters and their supporters have been described as handling the distressing situation “calmly and responsibly”, though some in the media have talked up fears of violence.
There are early reports of police with riot shields seeking to push small groups of campers. Tents have been destroyed, and one man was seen kneeling quietly amidst the destruction.
Bailiffs and the Corporation of London are facing criticism for a night-time raid, which has been described as “an intimidating tactic”. London police say they are present “to ensure public safety” as bailiffs clear tents from St Paul’s.
The camp has been a creative site for educational initiatives, seminars on global finance, and working groups on financial reform, economic alternatives and action to change the structure and culture of the City of London.
Follow the news on twitter using these hashtags: #occupy #olsx #occupylondon #lsx #eviction
Ekklesia has this comment:
Commenting in the immediacy of the forcible eviction of the Occupy camp at St Paul’s Cathedral in London, Simon Barrow, co-director of the Christian thinktank Ekklesia, said:
“This is a very sad day. The Occupy camp at St Paul’s has been a powerful symbol of the need for concentrations of power to be made accountable, devolved, redistributed and just. Now corporate interests are evicting those who have disturbed their ‘business as usual’.
“But the imaginative work of the Bank of Ideas and the social, economic and educational alternatives that have flourished as part of OLSX will undoubtedly find new ways forward and fresh focii.”
“Many people will be puzzled and disappointed that the Chapter at St Paul’s declined repeated requests to oppose forcible eviction of the Occupy camp, apparently siding behind the scenes with the Corporation of London.
“As the eviction takes place, it is to be hoped that the Cathedral recalls its historic Christian duty to be a site of refuge for those fleeing violence and injustice.
“Meanwhile, the Ring of Prayer, as a symbol of both resistance and nonviolence, will perhaps be seen as performing the kind of function that institutional religion cannot do, charting a different path for Christian conscience. Long after tonight, the lessons and further opportunities of these developments deserve to be reflected and acted upon.”
There is a live feed from St. Paul’s here.
Updated with this tweet: Simon Barrow ? @simonbarrow Reply Retweet Favorite · Open
Police violently push & kick @jon_bartley & others as they kneel & pray on steps of St Paul’s Cathedral. Police invited by St P’s. #occupy