More than 50,000 protesters marched on Friday in London to express concern about the United Kingdom’s decision to abandon the European Union (EU).
Objectors said they accepted referendum results but still wanted to show that 48 percent of voters did not agree with the decision. The reunion took place in central London, a week after 52 percent of electors in the United Kingdom decided to leave the 28-nation alliance. Prime Minister David Cameron said he respected the results but would not request the exit himself.
The next prime minister of the nation would have to activate Article 50 of the EU Treaty, to demand a separation. Five candidates said they accepted the referendum results and would proceed according to it.
A major part of the march’s crowd was composed by millennials. Political analysts have said that young voters mostly preferred to stay in the EU. Protesters said the referendum was part of a democratic system, but still want to show their disgust.
“Both sides have lied. We’ve been part of Europe for so long — you can’t change anything being alone. And to the EU, we’re not racist idiots. They represent a small number of people here. You’re always welcome,” said a 31-year-old protester to CNN.
Racial hate crimes have been increasing during the last week in Britain. Social media users have posted videos showing people arguing about the Brexit, on the subway or the bus. Helen Parker, a spokeswoman for the March for Europe, said the UK should take political action.
Parker told CNN “there is a lack of leadership in the government.” She added that the country needs immediate plans to face a possible chaos. Protesters were holding signs with messages about economics, politics, democracy and security.
— Tim Farron (@timfarron) July 2, 2016
March for Europe: ‘we condemn the misinformation over Brexit’
Organizers and speakers of the event issued a joint statement on Saturday, saying they have called people to involve themselves in “positive and democratic” discussions, about the new alliance with the old continent.
“We condemn the misinformation over Brexit and believe we need a properly informed debate on the way forward. We cannot pull up the drawbridge to Europe and call on our politicians to set out a clear route map for this partnership,” said the organizers via Facebook.
Speakers, including Kieran McDermott, Fabien Riggall and comedian Mark Thomas, said politicians in the nation must be prepared for a general election or a second referendum. The Saturday’s event was scheduled after pressure groups united on Facebook.
London Police has not arrested any protester on Saturday. The parliament was being protected by police officers and two helicopters, said the Journal. Some protesters have referred to the Saturday’s gathering as a “cathartic march.”
Thousands are marching through London to protest the U.K. leaving the E.U. https://t.co/7JXbLIGkn4
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) July 2, 2016
Protesters: ‘Divided Europe is a dangerous place’
Demonstrators argued the region would be more insecure without the support of the 28-nation bloc. The latter has created an economic alliance that allows a market of 500 people to do businesses using a single internal market.
Many companies have settled their headquarters in London to do transactions with the rest of Europe. Protesters said that millions of jobs could be at stake since enterprises would have to move to countries in the EU.
Protest organizers said some people were marching because they regretted their decision of leaving the EU. After the referendum results had been announced, the British pound’s value fell to its lowest level in 30 years.
Other people said they still supported the decision to abandon the EU, but requested to maintain a great relationship with the bloc. David Cameron has already announced plans to leave his place as prime minister in October.
62 percent and 55.7 percent of people in Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to remain in the EU, respectively. A major part of Londoners followed a similar trend. Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said the England’s capital remains open to Europeans.
— 2020EU (@2020EU) July 2, 2016
The U.K. could still conduct a general election or a second referendum
Regulators have proposed that the country should carry out a second referendum or a general election. Some argued that people should have voted after having more detailed information about actions implied in a separation.
Other politicians are calling the parliament to participate in the decision before the government activates Article 50. Geoffrey Robertson, a human rights lawyer, said on Monday that the U.K.’s democracy depends on representatives of the people.
According to Robertson, the Parliament should take action in November, said the Wall Street Journal. Some protesters argued on Saturday that the first campaign was “based on lies and misinformation.”
“I would like a second referendum,” said a 34-year-old Italian to NBC News.
Here is a video by the Press Association, featuring Saturday’s March of Europe:
Source: The Wallstreet Journal