UK parliament suspension: protesters march in Belfast

Protester says Johnson ‘setting dangerous precedent,’ draws parallels with rise of Hitler

Protesters gathered at Belfast City Hall  against  Boris Johnson’s decision  to suspend parliament in the run up to Brexit. Photograph: Amanda Ferguson

Protesters gathered at Belfast City Hall against Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run up to Brexit. Photograph: Amanda Ferguson

 

Around 100 people protested in Belfast on Saturday against British prime minister Boris Johnson’s move to suspend parliament.

Anti-prorogation activists gathered outside Belfast City Hall to “protest the shutdown” and call for the British government to reverse its recent decision to suspend parliament for five weeks.

Demonstrators accused Mr Johnson of trying to frustrate democracy by sidestepping MPs.

Brigitte Anton (52) from Frankfurt in Germany has been living in Belfast for 31 years.

Ms Anton, who was wearing a ‘Bo****x to Brexit’ hat and carrying an EU flag says Boris Johnson’s decision is “scary“ and “undemocratic”.

She said he was “setting a dangerous precedent” by suspending parliament and drew parallels with the rise of Hitler in Germany in the 1930s.

She said his behaviour was “developing toward dictatorship”.

Medical editor Susie Burlace (46) from England has been living in Northern Ireland for seven years.

She carried a placard with an Oscar Wilde reference highlighting that Stormont has been collapsed for over two years and now Westminster is shutting down.

Ms Burlace said she tends not to get involved in Northern politics but Johnson’s move “goes beyond unionist and republican, leave or remain”.

“We should not be silenced,” she said.

Software worker Graham Glendinning (49) from Holywood Co Down said the British government had no understanding of the impact a no deal Brexit would have on the North and that Johnson was “throwing democratic convention to the wind”.

“If they go ahead with no deal it’s war and peace for us,” he said.

Patrick Yu from the Council For Racial Equality said Mr Johnson was an unelected prime minister and he was taking “extreme” actions.

“It is unprecedented and the motivation is to stop debate in parliament,” he said.

“We have to protect the Good Friday Agrrement.

“Parliament should be making the final decision not the prime minister.”

Hundreds of thousands of demonstrators are expected to take to the streets across Britain today.

A protest is expected to take place outside the British embassy in Dublin on Tuesday.