Swedish environmentalist Greta Thunberg called this Thursday to identify the “true enemy” of the environment, at the conclusion of the first hearing of her trial in London for “disturbing public order” during an October demonstration.
“Environmental activists are prosecuted around the world for acting according to their conscience. We have to remember who the real enemy is,” said Thunberg, 21, as she left Westminster Court, in the center of the British capital.
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During the hearing, the first of a two-day trial, the prosecutor stated that Thunberg disregarded the order not to block the street where a protest against the Energy Intelligence Forum was taking place, in the elegant London district of Mayfair, where executives from major oil and gas companies.
Thunberg “said she was staying where she was and that's why she was arrested,” explained the prosecutor, Luke Staton, AFP reported.
Greta Thunberg pleaded not guilty in the trial being followed in London
Thunberg, accused of public disorder, only intervened today during that hearing to confirm her identity and date of birth, EFE reported. The environmental activist had pleaded not guilty in a first appearance in November, before another London court.
At the hearing this Thursday, the superintendent of the London Metropolitan Police (MET), Matthew Cox, intervened as a witness and recalled that Thunberg and other activists “blocked” the entrances and exits to a hotel and a road.
The Swedish activist, who gained global notoriety with her “school climate strikes,” which began when she was 15, faces a fine of up to £2,500 ($3,172).
Greta Thunberg leaving the court with activists Chris Kebbon and Joshua James Unwin (Photo: Reuters)By: REUTERS
A total of 26 people are prosecuted for the same reason.
Greta Thunberg's smile when the prosecutor spoke
Thunberg, dressed in a gray T-shirt and black pants, did not hide a mocking smile when prosecutor Staton explained that the accused had demonstrated when the main actors in the oil and gas sector were going to “discuss and debate” how to develop “solutions.” “sustainable” for energy.
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Upon arrival at the court, the prosecuted activists were received by supporters of environmental organizations, who cheered Thunberg. The protesters carried banners with slogans such as “Fossil-free London” or “Climate protest is not a crime.”
Greenpeace UK campaigner Maja Darlington said activists were being tried “for peacefully protesting” while oil executives were “celebrating making billions from selling climate-destroying fossil fuels”.
“Behind these closed doors (…), unscrupulous politicians make agreements and pacts with lobbyists for the destructive fossil fuel sector,” Thunberg declared on October 17, before she was arrested and taken away in a police van. .
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The young woman, released under judicial supervision, participated in another protest in front of the same hotel the next day. On that occasion, activists greeted conference participants with shouts of “Shame!” and posters criticizing the authorization to exploit the controversial Rosebank oil field in the North Sea.
Since then, the British government has granted new oil and gas exploration permits to strengthen the country's energy independence, one of Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's priorities.