THAT'S how you deal with eco mob: While British police stand by, it's a different story in Europe

Furious civilians and police officers in Europe are putting the UK police to shame by refusing to allow eco protesters to disrupt events and bring roads to a standstill – with the activists being dragged away with no hesitation.  

From Italian security guards tearing protesters’ hands off a Botticelli painting at a Florence art gallery to Tour de France fans angrily removing a group of eco activists from the middle of the road, the Europeans are taking matters into their own hands.

In stark contrast, security guards at London’s National Gallery simply watched on when eco-zealots covered John Constable’s priceless painting The Hay Wain with their own version and stuck their hands to the frame with glue. 

And Metropolitan police officers only removed an eco-mob which had forced Lloyd’s of London to close its City headquarters eight hours after the protesters blocked all 25 entrances and scaled the outside of the building.

Whilst Britons have been stuck in nine-mile tailbacks and hour-long queues after eco activists scaled the gantries on the M25 and stuck themselves to roads, furious civilians and authorities in countries such as Italy, France and Germany have stopped the protesters from disrupting events and bringing roads to a standstill.

Here, MailOnline takes a look at how Europe is fighting back against eco protesters.

A UK police officer sits next to members of the climate activists group Just Stop Oil after they blockaded petrol station on the M25 in April

A UK police officer sits next to members of the climate activists group Just Stop Oil after they blockaded petrol station on the M25 in April 

Italy 

While British police officers have stood by helplessly as eco-protesters have blocked roads and vandalised priceless paintings, the Italian authorities have dealt with the activists without hesitation.

On Friday, an Italian security guard tore protesters’ hands off a priceless Botticelli painting at a Florence art gallery and dragged them away. 

The security official stormed over to the young activists and pulled their superglued hands from the Renaissance masterpiece shortly after they began their short-lived protest in the Uffizi Gallery.

The unnamed man and two women were from climate activist group Ultima Generazione (‘Last Generation’) and had rolled out a banner which read: ‘Last Generation No Gas No Coal’. 

The activists, who had paid for tickets to get into the gallery, were removed from the gallery by police after the security guard dragged them away from the painting.

An Italian security guard tore protesters' hands off a priceless Botticelli painting at a Florence art gallery and dragged them away

An Italian security guard tore protesters’ hands off a priceless Botticelli painting at a Florence art gallery and dragged them away

The security guard first pulled the man's hand off the painting

He then proceeded to remove the young woman from the priceless Renaissance artwork

Enough is enough: the security guard first pulled the man’s hand off the painting (left), before proceeding to remove the young woman from the priceless Renaissance artwork (right). Police then detained the protesters, who had tickets

The no-nonsense Italian security guard dragged the pair out of the exhibition room, in a striking contrast to Britain's response

The no-nonsense Italian security guard dragged the pair out of the exhibition room, in a striking contrast to Britain’s response

Protesters from Just Stop Oil cover John Constable's The Hay Wain at the National Gallery in London earlier this month

Protesters from Just Stop Oil cover John Constable’s The Hay Wain at the National Gallery in London earlier this month 

It struck a jarring contrast to the inaction shown by British guards at the Trafalgar Square gallery this month, where Just Stop Oil zealots were allowed to cover over John Constable’s The Hay Wain with their own version.

More than an hour later, Brighton students Hannah Hunt, 23, and Eben Lazarus, 22, were finally arrested.

Meanwhile, Extinction Rebellion activists were forcibly removed from a motorway by furious Italian motorists after they blocked the busy road in Rome last month.

Demonstrating over environmental issues, the protesters sat in a row across Rome’s Raccordo – the city’s main ring-road and one of its busiest – holding banners.

A video shot from the side of the two-lane road showed the demonstrators using road-block protest tactics also used in Britain, causing a huge traffic jam to snake back as far as the eye could see, with no police officers or vehicles in sight.

In response, irate Italian motorists at the front of the queue jumped out of their vehicles to take action – dragging the protesters across the tarmac and dumping them on to the side of the road.

One man ripped an orange banner from the hands of the Extinction Rebellion activists and threw it over the side of the motorway barrier. A woman, dressed in a summer dress while still carrying her handbag, tore a second sign from their grasp.

After removing the banners, a second man joined the first in forcibly dragging the protesters by their arms across the tarmac to the side of the road, making enough of a gap for several vehicles to get through and past the demonstration.

Pictured: This is the moment Extinction Rebellion activists were forcibly removed by furious motorists after they blocked a busy motorway in Rome on Thursday

Pictured: Furious Italian drivers berated the protesters before grabbing their banners

Pictured: Furious Italian drivers berated the protesters before grabbing their banners

Pictured: Two motorists are shown ripping banners away from protesters in Rome on Thursday

Pictured: Two motorists are shown ripping banners away from protesters in Rome on Thursday

However, as the first man was dragging the remaining protesters off the road, the activists he had first removed saw an opportunity and ran back into the middle of the road, and in front of the on-coming traffic – only to sit down again with their banner.

With the traffic again being blocked, the man grabbed one of the female protesters by the hair and dragged her again to the side of the road. This did not deter her, however, as she quickly shuffled back in front of the traffic. 

The video showed the man – wearing sunglasses, shorts and a T-Shirt – shouting in the face of the female activist who had sat back down in the middle of the road.

This time, he picked her up and threw her to the side of the road. In the meantime, the second man was able to make a gap in the activists long enough for more cars and trucks to drive through and away from the scene.

By the end of the video, however, the protesters are shown persisting with their efforts, blocking at least half of the road – again with their orange banner. 

Corriere Dello Sport reported that the protest was eventually broke up with the arrival of local police, the Carabinieri (federal police) and the Digos (special forces) – with the protesters being taken into custody.

France

Tour de France fans became so fed up with a group of eco-protesters who were threatening to disrupt the historic bike race by sitting in the middle of the road they angrily removed the activists.

Eight climate activists from French campaign group Dernière Rénovation (Last Renovation) sporting T-shirts emblazoned with the message ‘we have 978 days left’ to tackle environmental decline tried to stop the race during the 20th stage between Lacapelle-Marival and Rocamadour on Saturday. 

But their attempts to wreak havoc at the stage were thwarted by spectators, who stormed onto the road and dragged them out of the path of the oncoming bikes even before the police arrived on the scene to make arrests. 

Striking pictures have emerged of the enraged fans bowling into the road to pull, push and harry the protesters off the tarmac to prevent them from ruining the race. 

Police officers were pictured arresting the eco-protesters by the side of the road. 

Hero Tour de France fans have taken justice into the own hands to remove eco-protesters threatening to disrupt the event by blocking the road. Pictured: People push the protesters away from the path of the oncoming Tour de France, between Lacapelle Marival and Rocamadour, in Gramat

Hero Tour de France fans have taken justice into the own hands to remove eco-protesters threatening to disrupt the event by blocking the road. Pictured: People push the protesters away from the path of the oncoming Tour de France, between Lacapelle Marival and Rocamadour, in Gramat

Eight climate activists from Dernière Rénovation (Last Renovation) wearing T-shirts saying 'we have 978 days left' to tackle the environment tried to stop the race during the 20th stage between Lacapelle-Marival and Rocamadour. Pictured: Tour de France fans pushing the protesters away on Saturday as they tried to block the race

Eight climate activists from Dernière Rénovation (Last Renovation) wearing T-shirts saying ‘we have 978 days left’ to tackle the environment tried to stop the race during the 20th stage between Lacapelle-Marival and Rocamadour. Pictured: Tour de France fans pushing the protesters away on Saturday as they tried to block the race 

Environmental collective 'Last Renovation' activists demonstrated on the road, and block the Tour de France, between Lacapelle Marival and Rocamadour, in Gramat, France, on Friday, July 23 before spectators dragged them away

Environmental collective ‘Last Renovation’ activists demonstrated on the road, and block the Tour de France, between Lacapelle Marival and Rocamadour, in Gramat, France, on Friday, July 23 before spectators dragged them away 

Started earlier this year, Dernière Rénovation (DR) is a French faction of the international climate activism conglomerate ‘A22’, which includes the likes of Just Stop Oil – a UK-based group which attempted to disrupt the British Formula 1 Grand Prix at Silverstone on July 3.

DR employ similar tactics to those used by the likes of Just Stop Oil and Insulate Britain, such as gluing themselves to the road to create congestion in large cities or putting themselves in harm’s way to disrupt major events.

Many did not take so kindly to the protestors’ actions, with several social media users in France expressing their disapproval at the ‘pathetic’ attempts to stop the historic bike race.

”Again with these charlatans… take action that is useful and not counterproductive… because no one supports you with your extremist positions,’ one user wrote, while another tweeted: ‘Their battle is lost – you don’t change the mentality of 66 millions people by blocking an event of French heritage’.

Most seemed to sympathise with the cause, but disagreed with the way in which DR tried to raise awareness.

‘I understand the group’s motivations – but not by doing this kind of thing at such a cycling event… Frankly pathetic, especially since pro cyclists almost fell because of you… that’s pathetic,’ one user said. 

Activists who demonstrated on the road, and blocked the Tour de France are pictured being handcuffed by police on Saturday

Activists who demonstrated on the road, and blocked the Tour de France are pictured being handcuffed by police on Saturday 

The climate activists from Dernière Rénovation were wearing T-shirts saying 'we have 978 days left' as they were arrested by police on Saturday

The climate activists from Dernière Rénovation were wearing T-shirts saying ‘we have 978 days left’ as they were arrested by police on Saturday 

The public moves the protesters on before the police arrived and to stop the block on the Tour de France on Saturday

The public moves the protesters on before the police arrived and to stop the block on the Tour de France on Saturday 

Their tactics and demands echo Insulate Britain, who want to see a government commitment to insulate buildings, and Just Stop Oil

Another activist seen on the ground by police

Their tactics and demands echo Insulate Britain, who want to see a government commitment to insulate buildings, and Just Stop Oil. Pictured: On Saturday 

The activists were pulled off the road by police onto the nearby grass, helped by a Tour official earlier this month on July 12

The activists were pulled off the road by police onto the nearby grass, helped by a Tour official earlier this month on July 12 

Two of the activists were sitting back-to-back tied together, while others let off smokebombs on July 12 during the Tour De France

Two of the activists were sitting back-to-back tied together, while others let off smokebombs on July 12 during the Tour De France 

Earlier this month, police officers picked up and dragged eco protesters who had tried to block the Tour de France race route away from the road.

Eco protesters have tried to disrupt other sporting events in France, but the authorities have acted swiftly.

In June, an environmental activist interrupted the French Open men’s semi-final between Marin Cilic of Croatia and Norwegian Casper Ruud for 15 minutes when she jumped onto Court Philippe Chatrier and tied and glued herself to the net.

The woman, a French citizen, wearing a t-shirt that read ‘we have 1028 days left’ tied herself to the edge of the net with a string around her neck.

The message, written on both sides of her white t-shirt, was a reference to a UN report on climate change.

But security guards spread out around the court before removing the woman from the net. The four security guards were pictured carrying the woman away from the court. 

Security members remove a protester from a court during the French Open after she tied herself to the net during the semi final in June

Security members remove a protester from a court during the French Open after she tied herself to the net during the semi final in June 

In June, an environmental activist interrupted the French Open men's semi-final between Marin Cilic of Croatia and Norwegian Casper Ruud for 15 minutes when she jumped onto Court Philippe Chatrier and tied and glued herself to the net.

In June, an environmental activist interrupted the French Open men’s semi-final between Marin Cilic of Croatia and Norwegian Casper Ruud for 15 minutes when she jumped onto Court Philippe Chatrier and tied and glued herself to the net.

Meanwhile, eco protesters were dragged from a busy motorway by furious French drivers after they blocked the road in Paris last month.

Despite the efforts of commuters, kilometres of traffic formed along the A13 motorway as the demonstration was prolonged by the high-vis-clad group, who kept shuffling back into the middle of the road.

The group behind the protest is ‘Dernier Rénovation’, the French equivalent to Insulate Britain, who campaign for the thermal renovation of buildings.

Police officers arrived at the scene and quickly removed the protesters from the middle of the road. 

The police arrived at 9:30am and were able to clear the blockade, though kilometres of traffic had built up

The police arrived at 9:30am and were able to clear the blockade, though kilometres of traffic had built up

Angry drivers headed to Paris this morning got out of their cars and dragged environmental activists out of the road

Angry drivers headed to Paris this morning got out of their cars and dragged environmental activists out of the road

In another example of European authorities responding quickly to eco protesters, a man was dragged away by security guards after throwing a custard pie at the famous Mona Lisa painting at the Louvre art gallery in Paris in May.

Witnesses said a man, who was wearing a wig and dressed as a woman, was rolling past Leonardo da Vinci’s famous masterpiece in a wheelchair before suddenly leaping to his feet and launching a pie at the canvas.

The perpetrator then threw a bouquet of roses into the air and was tackled to the ground by Louvre security guards moments later. The man was later taken into police custody. 

No damage was caused to the priceless painting which is protected by a bulletproof screen.

Visitors to the Louvre art gallery in Paris were left stunned by the incident which happened moments before closing time at the world-famous art gallery in May

Visitors to the Louvre art gallery in Paris were left stunned by the incident which happened moments before closing time at the world-famous art gallery in May 

Witnesses said a man, who was wearing a wig and dressed as a woman, was rolling past Leonardo da Vinci’s famous masterpiece in a wheelchair before suddenly leaping to his feet and launching a pie at the canvas (the man is pictured being led away by security)

Spain

In Spain, authorities are fighting back against eco protesters who have tried to disrupt major events and vandalise public buildings.

In June, dozens of climate protesters covered Spain’s parliament building in Madrid with red paint in a demonstration against the government’s failure to act quickly against climate change.

Riot police arrived at the scene quickly and dispersed the protesters, with some officers picking up the activists and dragging them away. At least 10 protesters were arrested following the demonstration.

Riot police arrived at the scene quickly and dispersed the protesters, with some officers picking up the activists and dragging them away in June. At least 10 protesters were arrested following the demonstration

Riot police arrived at the scene quickly and dispersed the protesters, with some officers picking up the activists and dragging them away in June. At least 10 protesters were arrested following the demonstration

Police take protestors out during an action of Scientist Rebellion to denounce the climate situation on April 6 in Madrid

Police take protestors out during an action of Scientist Rebellion to denounce the climate situation on April 6 in Madrid

Police officers arrest a climate change activist after he protested in front of Spain's parliament

Police officers arrest a climate change activist after he protested in front of Spain’s parliament

Many of the protesters wore white lab coats and were from the activist group Scientist Rebellion, which includes people from the scientific community.  

The protesters, many of whom wore white lab coats, form part of the relatively new activist group called Scientist Rebellion.

‘If we scientists don’t act like we’re in an emergency, how can we expect the public to do so?’ the group asks on its website.

Police officers carry a climate change activist away from the Parliament building in Madid in June

Police officers carry a climate change activist away from the Parliament building in Madid in June

Police officers remove a climate change activist of Scientist Rebellion group from protesting in front of the Congress of Deputies in Madrid in June

Police officers remove a climate change activist of Scientist Rebellion group from protesting in front of the Congress of Deputies in Madrid in June 

In June, dozens of climate protesters covered Spain's parliament building in Madrid with red paint in a demonstration against the government's failure to act quickly against climate change

In June, dozens of climate protesters covered Spain’s parliament building in Madrid with red paint in a demonstration against the government’s failure to act quickly against climate change

Germany

Frustrated motorists and police officers have physically hurled protesters off the road after the demonstrators blocked major roads in Berlin in June.

Police officers quickly dragged protesters from the road after they had sat in the middle of the busy road to stop the traffic.

Other protesters had glued themselves to the road, so police used cooking oil to loosen their hands.

Several truckers got out of their vehicles to berate the activists while a few expressed support for the climate cause but questioned the way the protests were conducted.

‘They need to find a different way to do this than to block other people,’ said one driver on his way to work, who would only give his name as Stefan. 

Police officers carry away climate activist Lina Schinkoethe during a protest with the group Uprising of the Last Generation at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany in June

Police officers carry away climate activist Lina Schinkoethe during a protest with the group Uprising of the Last Generation at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany in June 

Ernst Hoermann, 72, has his hand removed from the ground after he glued it during a protest as part of the Uprising of the Last Generation in Berlin in July

Ernst Hoermann, 72, has his hand removed from the ground after he glued it during a protest as part of the Uprising of the Last Generation in Berlin in July 

Activists of the climate protest group 'Last Generation' block an exit of the highway in Berlin, Germany, in July before being removed by police officers

Activists of the climate protest group ‘Last Generation’ block an exit of the highway in Berlin, Germany, in July before being removed by police officers

Berlin’s mayor has called the street blockades ‘crimes,’ while the city’s top security official is demanding that prosecutors and courts mete out swift convictions. So far, no cases have gone to trial. 

Lina Schinkoethe, 19, is among the eco protesters who blocked the road in Berlin and who was jailed for her protest at what she believes is the German government’s failure to act against climate change.

Schinkoethe is part of a group called Uprising of the Last Generation that claims the world has only a few years left to turn the wheel around and avoid catastrophic levels of global warming.

‘We need to generate friction, peaceful friction, so that there’s an honest debate and we can act accordingly,’ she said.

That sentiment was echoed by Ernst Hoermann, a retired railway engineer and grandfather of eight who has been traveling to Berlin from Bavaria regularly to take part in the protests.

‘We basically have to cause a nuisance until it hurts,’ he said as a police officer tried to unstick him from the road with the help of cooking oil.

The Netherlands

Police in the Netherlands have cracked down on eco-protesters who have tried to block major roads.

In May, police officers arrested 175 climate protesters from Extinction Rebellion after they set up camp on one of the busiest streets in the city of Rotterdam and blocked the traffic.

Video shows the police dragging the activists away from the road – but many of the activists had stuck themselves to the road with glue, meaning officers had to use Coca Cola to remove their hands from the tarmac. 

In May, police officers arrested 175 climate protesters from Extinction Rebellion after they set up camp on one of the busiest streets in the city of Rotterdam and blocked the traffic

In May, police officers arrested 175 climate protesters from Extinction Rebellion after they set up camp on one of the busiest streets in the city of Rotterdam and blocked the traffic

Video shows the police dragging the activists away from the road - but many of the activists had stuck themselves to the road with glue, meaning officers had to use Coca Cola to remove their hands from the tarmac

Video shows the police dragging the activists away from the road – but many of the activists had stuck themselves to the road with glue, meaning officers had to use Coca Cola to remove their hands from the tarmac

A police officer tries to remove a woman's hand from a car with Coca Cola after she glued her hand to the vehicle

A police officer tries to remove a woman’s hand from a car with Coca Cola after she glued her hand to the vehicle 

The protesters had been holding signs which read ‘Keep the oil in the ground’ and ‘Let the fossil fuel industry go extinct’. 

Protesters also threw fake blood on the office of oil and gas giant Shell during the protests. 

Police officers issued warnings to the protesters to disperse, but when they refused, the cops began arresting the demonstrators.  

Portugal

While British police officers have stood by helplessly as eco-zealots disrupt major events, Portuguese police have reacted swiftly. 

In June, officers in Lisbon pushed Greenpeace activists off the U.N. Ocean Conference premises as they tried to stage a protest in support of strong action to save the world’s seas and marine life.

About 7,000 delegates were at the conference, including heads of state, scientists and NGOs, to assess progress in implementing a U.N. directive to protect marine life. French President Emmanuel Macron attended the event.

In June, officers in Lisbon pushed Greenpeace activists off the U.N. Ocean Conference premises as they tried to stage a protest in support of strong action to save the world's seas and marine life

In June, officers in Lisbon pushed Greenpeace activists off the U.N. Ocean Conference premises as they tried to stage a protest in support of strong action to save the world’s seas and marine life

Portuguese police officers move to push the activists off the premises of the UN Ocean Conference in Lisbon on June 30

Portuguese police officers move to push the activists off the premises of the UN Ocean Conference in Lisbon on June 30

Ten Greenpeace activists from different countries tried to place large stickers with messages such as ‘Killed by political inaction’ and ‘Protect the oceans’ on billboards outside the venue, but officers stopped the action and pushed them out.

As activists were blocked from carrying out their demonstration, a police officer told them: ‘It’s a fair fight but not here, OK?’

UK

Whilst the public and authorities have responded quickly in European countries, British police officers have largely stood by while Britons suffer with long motorway queues and famous paintings are vandalised.

Earlier this month, Just Stop Oil activists provoked fury when they carried out a protest at the National Gallery by covering John Constable’s The Hay Wain with their own version featuring double yellow lines, pollution and a washing machine.

British guards stood by as they allowed the activists cover the painting and glue their hands to the frame. 

More than an hour later, Brighton students Hannah Hunt, 23, and Eben Lazarus, 22, were finally arrested.

Protesters from Just Stop Oil glue their hands to the frame of John Constable's The Hay Wain at the National Gallery on July 4

Protesters from Just Stop Oil glue their hands to the frame of John Constable’s The Hay Wain at the National Gallery on July 4

Protesters from Just Stop Oil cover John Constable's The Hay Wain at the National Gallery in London

Protesters from Just Stop Oil cover John Constable’s The Hay Wain at the National Gallery in London

Just Stop Oil activists have carried out similar protests over the past month at art galleries in Glasgow, Manchester and London – while the group blocked a motorway on Wednesday, causing nine hours of traffic chaos on the M25. 

Three eco-activists accused of sparking nine hours of traffic chaos by climbing on to the gantry above the M25 are set for trial after pleading not guilty.

Cressida Gethin, 20, Alexander Wilcox, 21, and Emma Mani, 45, are charged with causing a public nuisance following a Just Stop Oil demonstration on Wednesday morning.

They are accused of forcing the motorway to close in both directions by climbing on an overhead gantry and unfurling banners.  

They pleaded not guilty at Ealing Magistrates’ Court in west London on Friday.

Specialist police climbers lower a protester via a winch from the climate campaign group Just Stop Oil after they climbed an overhead motorway gantry above the M25

Specialist police climbers lower a protester via a winch from the climate campaign group Just Stop Oil after they climbed an overhead motorway gantry above the M25

The protester is led away by officers after three different parts of the M25 endured chaos Wednesday with closures and huge backlogs of traffic

The protester is led away by officers after three different parts of the M25 endured chaos Wednesday with closures and huge backlogs of traffic

A police van waits as protesters from climate campaign group 'Just Stop Oil' climbed overhead motorway gantries on the M25 between junction 14 and junction 15 causing both carriageways to be closed

A police van waits as protesters from climate campaign group ‘Just Stop Oil’ climbed overhead motorway gantries on the M25 between junction 14 and junction 15 causing both carriageways to be closed

In May, an eco mob which forced Lloyd’s of London to close its City headquarters was finally moved on by police eight hours after protesters blocked all 25 entrances and scaled the outside of the building.

Extinction Rebellion fanatics, some of which were dressed as rats and cleaners, descended on the iconic office at 7am in May and used superglue, chains and bike locks to block ways in and out of the building, forcing staff to work from home for the day.

While the insurance firm insists the action did not disrupt trading, it still took police nearly eight hours get the activists to leave the protest which was calling for Lloyd’s to stop insuring coal, oil and gas projects.

It is not known whether City of London Police have arrested any members of the eco-warrior group, some of whom scaled the outside of the building and unfurled banners, reading ‘End Fossil Fuels Now’ and ‘Insure Climate Justice’. Others dressed up as rats in suits, claiming the firm is putting ‘profits before planet’.

Some protesters have dressed up as rats and 'dirty scrubbers' for the protest as they aim jabs at the nearly 340-year-old firm this morning

Some protesters have dressed up as rats and ‘dirty scrubbers’ for the protest as they aim jabs at the nearly 340-year-old firm this morning

Members of the climate activists group Just Stop Oil blockade a petrol station on the M25 in April as two police officers look on

Members of the climate activists group Just Stop Oil blockade a petrol station on the M25 in April as two police officers look on

Just Stop Oil protesters have targeted oil terminals across the UK and sparking fuel shortages that have left some motorists unable to fill their cars and get to work – but police officers have stood by and not acted quickly. 

This includes a 40-hour protest at an oil depot in Essex which saw eco-activists arrested, while 10 other fuel depots were targeted in May, leading to condemnation from Downing Street of their ‘guerrilla tactics’.

Earlier in May, protesters caused Tower Bridge to be closed for several hours after they occupied the famous landmark and unveiled a green banner with black writing reading: ‘End fossil fuels now’.  

source: dailymail.co.uk