Edinburgh Uni student charged with a criminal offence for holding an anti-monarchy sign

She was charged with ‘a breach of the peace’

Mariángela,a 22- year-old University of Edinburgh student, was arrested after holding an anti-monarchy sign ahead of the accession proclamation ceremony of King Charles III in Edinburgh.

The arrest was made outside of St.Giles Cathedral, with a spokesman saying that the 22-year-old woman was arrested “in connection with a breach of the peace”.

The student appeared at Mercat Cross moments before the proclamation was made with a sign saying “fuck imperialism, abolish monarchy”.

Mourners at the ceremony called the protestor “disrespectful” and that their actions “dampened the event for the rest of the crowd”, however, others thought she should be “let go”.

The arrest happened moments before the proclamation ceremony of Charles III, and the crowd “applauded” when officers appeared behind to arrest her. One spectator said that her actions were “very disrespectful, there’s a time and a place if you want to protest, but this isn’t it.” Another said she should be “let go” as “it’s free speech”, whilst others shouted for the police to “have some respect.”

After the arrest was made the proclamation of Charles began with Lord Lyon King of Arms declaring “God save the King.” One man was heard booing throughout, with others calling for a republic.

The advocacy group Liberty described the new powers given to the police to stop protests is “a cause for deep concern”, with Labour MP Zarah Sultana responding to arrest in Edinburgh by saying “no one should be arrested for just expressing republican views.”

Mariángela was part of the Global Majority Vs Campaign who released a statement following the arrest saying it “condemned the centuries of colonial injustice, genocide, and unlawful extraction that have been – and continue to be – carried out in the name of the British Crown”.

They added: “Calling for the abolition of the monarchy is as old as the monarchy itself and is a cornerstone of freedom of speech in the UK.”

Mariangela spoke out about her arrest claiming that she was “wrongfully arrested while exercising my right to protest”. She explained why she held her sign, saying that she wanted to “condemn the centuries of colonial injustice, genocide, and unlawful extraction that have been–and continue to be–carried out in the name of the British Crown.”

She went on to say that as “a Mexican person living in the United Kingdom” she “strongly opposes the continuous resource extraction and exploitation of racialised bodies in the Global South” and that all this has only been possible “through systems of imperial oppression.”

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