British protesters tell Trump from Tower Bridge: 'Build bridges not walls'

Reuters News
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Posted: Jan 20, 2017 3:34 AM

By Alistair Smout and Luke Bridges

LONDON (Reuters) - A banner reading "Build bridges not walls" was draped across London's Tower Bridge on Friday as part of a series of events across the world aimed at expressing displeasure at the inauguration of Donald Trump as U.S. president.

Protesters on the iconic bridge held up pink letters reading "Act now!" soon after sunrise while others unfurled the banner over the railings and a speedboat with a black flag reading "build bridges not walls" raced down the River Thames.

Beside the British parliament, protesters draped banners saying "Migrants welcome here" and "Migration is older than language" over Westminster bridge. Other protests are planned in London and other British cities on Friday.

Trump, who will be sworn in at a ceremony in Washington on Friday, faces protests in Washington during his inauguration, and in cities from Toronto to Sydney, Addis Ababa and Dublin over his politics which critics say are divisive and dangerous.

The protest in London was organised by the campaign group also called "Bridges not Walls", in reference to Trump's pledge to build a wall on the Mexican border.

"We won't let the politics of hate peddled by the likes of Donald Trump take hold," Nona Hurkmans of Bridges not Walls said in a statement.

Trump opponents have been angered by his comments during the campaign about women, illegal immigrants and Muslims and his pledges to scrap the Obamacare health reform and build a wall on the Mexican border.

The Republican's supporters admire his experience in business, including as a real estate developer and reality television star, and view him as an outsider who will take a fresh approach to politics.

Trump has repeatedly pledged to "make America great again" and said on Twitter that he would fight very hard to make his presidency a great journey for the American people.

(Reporting by Alistair Smout and Luke Bridges; editing by Kate Holton and Guy Faulconbridge, Ralph Boulton)