The British branch of the Black Lives Matter movement staged a major protest across the UK Friday to draw attention to racial injustices in that country.
The campaign involved shutting down major thoroughfares in Britain’s largest cities. Among other things, protesters blocked off the M4 highway—Europe’s largest—leading to Heathrow Airport. 10 people were reportedly arrested in the incident.
Friday was chosen to mark the anniversary of the 2011 death of Mark Duggan, a 29-year-old black man whose killing by police prompted protests and riots across Britain. But the group is also trying to raise awareness about the deaths of black people across the world, pointing out that 3,034 “black and brown bodies” have died trying to reach Europe via the Mediterranean Sea.
In a video, Black Lives Matter UK elaborated on the motives behind the protests.
As Friday rolled on, the group kept tweeting updates.
The IPCC is a reference to the Independent Police Complaints Commission. Four years ago, a House of Commons inquiry concluded that the commission was “woefully underequipped and hamstrung in achieving its original objectives. It has neither the powers nor the resources that it needs to get to the truth when the integrity of the police is in doubt.”
Leon Patterson was a mixed-race 31-year-old who died in police custody in 1992. His family has long held the police abused and neglected him.