Police at Cop26 climate summit in Glasgow to get public order training
About 10,000 officers a day will be present at event likely to be focus of wide range of demonstrations
Thousands of officers will receive public order training in the run-up to the Cop26 summit in Glasgow in November, Police Scotland has said.
About 10,000 officers from around the UK will be deployed each day of the climate summit, making it one of the largest policing operations ever undertaken in Britain.
Leaders from around the world will gather in Glasgow to discuss tackling climate change, and Police Scotland said it would take a human rights-based approach to policing any demonstrations during Cop26.
A senior officer said the force was already engaging with protest groups to allow peaceful demonstrations.
Will Kerr, the deputy chief constable for local policing, said: “Police Scotland is a rights-based organisation that puts our values of integrity, fairness, respect and a commitment to upholding human rights at the heart of everything we do.
“This means that we will protect the rights of people who wish to peacefully protest or counter-protest at Cop26, balanced against the rights of the wider community.
“At the same time, those wishing to protest have a responsibility to do so within the law and I would remind the small minority of people who may be intent on violent disorder or causing damage that we will deal with them swiftly and robustly.”
Quan Nguyen, the Scotland coordinator of the Cop26 Coalition, which is organising protests in Glasgow, across the UK and worldwide, said: “Protest and dissent are vital to a healthy democracy, and are how human rights and justice have always been won the world over.
“Without protest, the political will to act is just not there. The rights to protest, freedom of assembly and freedom of expression are protected rights which the police have a legal duty to defend.
“People must be able to challenge the most exclusionary and least transparent Cop ever held, otherwise we stand no chance in tackling the deadly climate catastrophe.”