London

Heathrow expansion: Protesters arrested on M4 spur road

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Media captionOne protester had to be carried off the motorway by four police officers

Heathrow expansion protesters were arrested after they blocked a motorway near the airport.

Environmental activists disrupted the west London airport's M4 spur road as a number of groups demonstrated on Saturday over the government's recent decision to approve a third runway.

Fifteen arrests were made for obstructing the highway or public order offences.

Traffic was disrupted but there was no reported impact on flights.

Image copyright PA
Image caption A Heathrow spokesman warned passengers to allow extra time to travel to the airport
Image copyright PA
Image caption Protesters from campaign group RisingUp! locked themselves together as they blocked the East Ramp near Heathrow
Image copyright PA
Image caption Police released protesters who chained themselves together

Protesters from the environmental organisation Rising Up! also locked themselves together as they blocked the East Ramp road near the airport.

Other campaigners gathered on the flyover to chant "No ifs, no buts, no third runway" and "No more runways".

A Heathrow spokesman warned passengers to allow extra time to travel or to use public transport where possible.

A spokesman for Rising Up! said: "The government's decisions to expand Heathrow, despite mass opposition from local residents and the fact that doing so is incompatible with the UK's own laws on climate change, leaves us with no morally acceptable option but to resist."

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Image caption A number of organisations demonstrated at Heathrow on Saturday
Image copyright Climate Change is a Crisis

Neil Keveren, a resident of nearby Harmondsworth, said: "Democracy has failed us.

"As a direct result, the quality of life and life expectancy of the population here will be shorter.

"This is against our human rights and must be defended. Who is left to correct this injustice when our politicians will not?

"The answer is us - you and me."

A spokeswoman for Heathrow said: "Independent analysis by the Airports Commission has found that building and operating an additional runway at Heathrow is compatible with the UK meeting its long-term climate change reduction targets.

"The Independent Committee on Climate Change has also shown that a 60% growth in passenger numbers in the United Kingdom can be achieved within the UK's Climate Change Targets."

Image copyright @MetPoliceEvents

The @MetPoliceEvents account confirmed the arrests on its Twitter feed.

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