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Environment

Liz Truss interrupted by Greenpeace protesters during Tory conference speech

The Greenpeace protesters held up a banner reading “who voted for this” during Liz Truss’s speech and were escorted out by security

Greenpeace protesters interrupted prime minister Liz Truss’s closing speech at the Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham with a banner reading: “Who voted for this”. 

Greenpeace said the demonstrators were present at the conference to protest against Truss “shredding” promises made in the 2019 Conservative manifesto. 

After being interrupted, Truss told security “let’s get them removed”, while conference attendees booed and shouted “out out” as the protesters were escorted from the room. 

After they were removed, Truss resumed her speech by saying: 

“Later on I’ll talk about the anti-growth coalition but I think they are in the hall already”.

Truss and her government have faced criticism in recent weeks from numerous environmental groups and NGOs for plans to resume fracking and tear up environmental protections. 

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Earlier this week, in an unusual political intervention, bird conservation charity the RSPB accused the government of launching an “attack on nature” with plans to implement “investment zones” which would threaten key nature sites in the UK. 

The RSPB also expressed concern over murmurings that the government may scrap post-Brexit environmental land management schemes which would have compensated farmers for enhancing nature. 

Other conservation and wildlife charities such as the Wildlife Trusts have also joined the RSPB in criticising the government for rowing back on environmental protections.

Rebecca Newsom, Greenpeace UK’s head of public affairs, said: “Who voted for this? In a healthy democracy, people should get the government programme they voted for, but Liz Truss is putting most of it through the shredder. People voted for strong action on climate, a fracking moratorium, world-leading environmental protections, and tackling poverty and inequality. What they’re getting instead is fracking, a potential bonfire of rules on wildlife and nature protection, and now the prospect of benefit cuts.

“Broken promise after broken promise, the prime minister is quickly turning her party’s manifesto into the longest piece of false advertising ever written. Many will be left wondering whether her government answers to the public or to the hedge fund managers, right-wing think tanks and fossil fuel giants that are cheering it on.

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