Wrong to label Extinction Rebellion as extremists, says Home Office adviser

Peer at odds with Priti Patel over climate activists on eve of more protests

A government extremism adviser has admitted during a private meeting that it is wrong to label Extinction Rebellion (XR) supporters as “extreme”, despite the home secretary, Priti Patel, condemning the group as “criminals” who threaten the nation’s way of life.

John Woodcock, the former Labour MP who was asked by the Home Office this year to examine disruption and violence by extreme political groups, sought to reassure XR activists that he did not regard the movement as uniformly extreme during a Zoom video conference call last month. “You’re worried that I want to label everyone who supports XR as extremists and that is certainly not the case,” he said.

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