Protesters climb onto Scottish Parliament roof to protest over Gaza

Around 13 protesters have climbed onto the roof of the Scottish Parliament to demonstrate against the government’s "weak stance" on Gaza.

The demonstrators are from the group We Are All Hana Shalabi and say they have a number of demands.

Ramy Albana from the group said their protest was planned to coincide with First Minister’s Questions on Thursday.

The 22-year-old said: "We are on the roof to make a stance on the aggressive war that Israel has launched on Gaza, in response to the Scottish Government’s weak stance.

"We are supporting the Palestinian people, especially after the recent clashes."

When asked if anyone had stopped them from getting onto the roof, Mr Albana said: "No, no one tried to stop us, we have been planning this for some time".

Beti Brown, 19, who was also on the roof, added: ''The world has been shocked to watch Israel's recent attacks on the civilian population of Gaza, and many people have felt helpless as to what we can do as members of the public to stop the violence.

"We are calling on our government to acknowledge Palestinian rights, which include the right to defend themselves against the illegal occupation it has suffered under for decades, and to support the movement for boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel.''

The protesters were removed by police and have been detained.

A police spokesman said: "Lothian and Borders Police responded to the Scottish Parliament at around 11.30am on Thursday after 10 people staged a rooftop demonstration. These individuals were removed and are currently being detained in connection with this incident."

A Scottish Parliament spokeswoman said: "This is a matter for the police. There was no threat to the Parliament’s security and parliamentary business continued as scheduled."

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