Monday, 4 Dec 2023

Kate and William share touching note to war heroes as King Charles leads Cenotaph service after violent protests | The Sun

PRINCE William and Princess Kate shared a touching note to war heroes today at the Cenotaph – just 24 hours after chaos unfolded by the memorial.

The Royal pair joined King Charles as he laid a wreath in an emotional Remembrance Day service in London – as they united the nation in sorrow.

The service appeared calm and respectful after protests saw violence break out across central London yesterday morning and into the night – with bottles thrown, flares let off and brawls break out in explosive confrontations.

But today, the King led the nation to unite in grief as Brits at Remembrance Day services across the country bowing their heads in the two minutes of silence.

The monarch this morning laid a wreath at the foot of the Cenotaph in London, the memorial where chaotic scenes yesterday unfolded as thugs threw bottles at police.

William, the Prince of Wales, also placed a poppy wreath – along with the message "In memory of all those who sacrificed so much" which was then translated into Welsh – at the memorial, while Princess Kate and Queen Camilla solemnly paid their respects at a balcony overlooking the service.

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A long line of armed forces was seen snaking from Downing Street to down past Horse Guards Parade as wreaths of poppies are taken inside.

Crowds were heard clapping as the group, which was made up of 10,000 veterans and 800 armed forces, made their way through the streets.

The Massed Bands and Pipers stood tall as they and thousands of others gathered in the drizzling rain.

The Duke of Kent, however, missed the service -said to have reluctantly stayed home after "episodic mobility issues".

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Yesterday's counter-protests had been organised amid fears pro-Palestine marches would interrupt Armistice Day services.

It comes as…

  • Rishi Sunak today placed a wreath at the Cenotaph after condemning yesterday's violence
  • Sombre Kate paid tribute to the late Queen in her earrings at the service
  • A major royal was forced to pull out of the service today over health woes
  • A Falklands hero spoke out – saying the Pro-Palestinian marches shouldn't have gone ahead on Armistice Day

But the groups started clashing with cops – hurling missiles as they rushed through the streets chanting "England till I die" and "Let us through".

Cops said 126 of the counter-protesters were arrested.

And while the Met Police said the 300,000-strong pro-Palestine march started off with "no incidents", a group of 150 was stopped after shooting fireworks at cops.

It was revealed this afternoon that seven men had been charged – with police still trying to identify more people accused of anti-Semitism.

The cops have also launched a probe after Jewish families leaving a north London synagogue were said to have been referred by pro-Palestine activists.

The Campaign Against Antisemitism confirmed it was "aware" of the Jewish families "being targeted on their way out of synagogue".

The group said it had "received multiple reports of police having to escort congregants away in groups for their own safety".

Footage circulating online showed a group of men holding green flags, waving Palestine flags and shouting from cars.

Defence Secretary Grant Shapps said there would likely be more arrests, too.

He told Sky News' Sunday Morning With Trevor Phillips programme: "I'm sure there are far more arrests still to be made from the march that took place yesterday, simply because either the police were distracted here or because they weren't going to intervene immediately." 

Shapps also commented on Suella Braverman after the Home Secretary claimed cops had "played favourites" over this weekend's protests.

He pushed back against the suggestions she had fuelled the protests – saying it had "nothing to do with" her inflammatory article.

I'm sure there are far more arrests still to be made from the march that took place yesterday.

Shapps said: "It is the case that some people just turned up determined – by the way, nothing to do with what the Home Secretary said in terms of having already said they would be here doing these things – to disrupt things here at the Cenotaph.

"This counter-protest was already going to happen."

However, he added: "I wouldn't use that set of words myself."

Thousands – including politicians – were impacted when both protesters and counter-protesters took to the capital's streets.

Senior Cabinet minister Michael Gove was snapped trying to make his way through Victoria Station while pro-Palestine demonstrators were inside.

Footage showed Gove trying to make his way through with police escorting him with crowds chanting at him.

But Charles also stood firm for the nation last night, unveiling a touching tribute to his late parents last night at the Festival of Remembrance.

Charles, who will be 75 on Tuesday, was joined by the Queen, the Prince and Princess of Wales and other senior royals at the event.

As he unveiled the statue of his mother, he briefly looked up and appeared to shed a tear.

Charles then made his way into the hall with Queen Camilla for the two-hour event, which features hundreds of veterans and serving military personnel.

Thousands of Brits paid tribute to war heroes this weekend despite the protests.

Speaking at the London service today, Craig Davis, 30, told The Sun: “I’m here to remember the sacrifices of the people of the First World War and all the conflicts that have gone on. 

“People shouldn’t have got violent yesterday. It’s disrespectful. People are allowed to have their own opinion and protest but it should never get violent.

"We’re in the 21st Century, we should be better at resolving conflict rather than being violent."

There appeared to be no trouble at the service – but a reporter at the scene said one person was taken away by cops.

Remembrance weekend is a time for us to come together as a nation and remember those who fought and died for our freedoms.

Suella Braverman was among the politicians who today attended the service.

She stepped forward laid a wreath of poppies at the foot of the cenotaph – as did Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.

Sunak last night slammed the “violent, wholly unacceptable” actions of counter-protesters and “Hamas sympathisers” on the pro-Palestinian march.

The PM said: "I condemn the violent, wholly unacceptable scenes we have seen today from the EDL and associated groups and Hamas sympathisers attending the National March for Palestine.

"The despicable actions of a minority of people undermine those who have chosen to express their views peacefully.

"Remembrance weekend is a time for us to come together as a nation and remember those who fought and died for our freedoms.

"What we have seen today does not defend the honour of our Armed Forces, but utterly disrespects them.

"That is true for the EDL thugs attacking police officers and trespassing on the Cenotaph, and it is true for those singing antisemitic chants and brandishing pro-Hamas signs and clothing on today's protest.

"The fear and intimidation the Jewish community have experienced over the weekend is deplorable.

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"All criminality must be met with the full and swift force of the law. That is what I told the Met Police Commissioner on Wednesday, that is what they are accountable for and that is what I expect.

"I will be meeting the Met Police Commissioner in the coming days."

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