By Muhammad Mussa
London (AA) – Tens of thousands of people marched through the streets of London and other major cities in the U.K. to protest against the visit by U.S. President Donald Trump.
The protest, organized by the Stop The War Coalition, was attended by people from across the country and lasted throughout the day, with rallies taking place at Trafalgar Square and Parliament Square.
Former Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and current and former leaders of the opposition Labour party, Jeremy Corbyn and Ed Miliband also joined the protest to voice their opposition to Trump’s visit.
The atmosphere was akin to a carnival with music playing, people dancing and vendors serving food while others chanted anti-Trump slogans or held signs that read “Dump Trump!”, “LoveTrumpsHate” and “TRUMP NOT WELCOME”.
Activists also launched a four-meter-high orange baby Trump balloon over Parliament Square. The balloon, which depicts a baby Trump wearing a diaper and holding an iPhone, has come to symbolize the opposition to Trump’s visit and has been the center of a heated debate between anti and pro-Trump supporters.
Addressing the mass crowds at Trafalgar Square, Jeremy Corbyn said that “the message that goes out today from London is together here in London and around this country, our message to our visitor is we are united in our hope for a world of justice not division”.
“We are asserting our rights to democracy, our rights to freedom of speech and our rights to want a world that is not divided by misogyny, racism and hate” Corbyn reiterated to the cheers of the lively crowd.
Although the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, was unable to attend the protest, he praised the demonstrations as a “victory for democracy and freedom of speech”.
“Trump has said that he is popular in the U.K.” Tess, a 19-year-old student, told Anadolu Agency. “And today we have shown that that statement couldn’t be further from the truth.”
“The fact that Trump is avoiding London and will not be received by the Queen in a horse-drawn carriage is a sign of victory for the mayor and the people of London,” said Andy from Middlesborough. “London has no place for a racist and misogynstic personality like Trump”.
One protestor, holding a sign that read “How Dare You Combover Here”, said: “London’s diversity and multiculturalism is what scares Trump, he sees the success of this great city and that puts a dent in his pride and ego”.
Similar protests were held in other major cities across the U.K. such as Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow and Belfast.