‘Civil discobedience’: Dancing in protest as UN climate summit proceeds

Protest called by Extinction Rebellion blocks Madrid’s central shopping street Gran Via

Cyclists  take part in a rally against climate change in Madrid, Spain, on Saturday. Photograph: EPA

Cyclists take part in a rally against climate change in Madrid, Spain, on Saturday. Photograph: EPA

 

Hundreds of people blocked a central Madrid street on Saturday by dancing to demand action against climate change in what protesters dubbed “civil disco-bedience”.

The protest, called by grassroots green movement Extinction Rebellion, blocked the central shopping street Gran Via. Activists waved flags and danced to songs including the Bee Gees’ 1977 hit, Stayin’ Alive.

“We’ve tried all the normal safe ways – petitions, marches, writing letters to the politicians, so now all we can do is civil disobedience,” Joan, an Australian who has been living in Madrid for 18 months, told Reuters.

“We’re here on Gran Via in Madrid doing civil disco-bedience,” she added as protesters danced around her.

Despite the cool winter temperatures, some of the demonstrators danced topless along the street.

Young demonstrators hold placards at La Puerta Del Sol in Madrid on Saturday during a protest called by Animal Equality (Animal Igualdad), an international non-profit animal rights organisation, to denounce the impact of industrial livestock on the planet and animals, on the sidelines of the UN Climate Change Conference, COP25. Photograph: Cristina Quicler/AFP/Getty
Young demonstrators hold placards at La Puerta Del Sol in Madrid on Saturday during a protest called by Animal Equality (Animal Igualdad), an international non-profit animal rights organisation, to denounce the impact of industrial livestock on the planet and animals, on the sidelines of the UN Climate Change Conference, COP25. Photograph: Cristina Quicler/AFP/Getty

The protest coincides with Madrid hosting the annual UN climate summit, which opened last Monday with a call from UN chief Antonio Guterres not to be the “generation ... that fiddled while the planet burned”.

By the meeting’s close on December 13th, negotiators hope to resolve remaining disagreements on how to implement an accord struck in Paris in 2015 to avert catastrophic global warming. – Reuters