Protesters wielding pro-democracy placards and EU flags rallied over the weekend in dozens of British cities against Prime Minister Boris Johnson's controversial move to suspend Parliament just weeks before Brexit. In the biggest demonstration, thousands of whistle-blowing, drum-banging people gathered raucously outside the gates of Downing Street in London chanting "Boris Johnson shame on you!"
The demonstrations come ahead of an intense political week in which Johnson's opponents will go to court to block his move to suspend Parliament from mid-September and legislate against leaving the European Union without an agreement.
Queen Elizabeth last week approved the request to end what has been the longest session of Parliament in nearly 400 years in the second week of September and reopen it on Oct. 14, just over two weeks before Brexit. The House of Commons typically goes into recess around the annual party conference season, which kicks off on Sept. 14 and ends on Oct. 2, but critics slammed this lengthier recess. Opposition to Johnson's move to suspend Parliament crystallized amid protests, legal action and a petition to block the move. Thousands of people protested in London, Manchester, Edinburgh and other cities, while an online petition seeking to block the decision has garnered more than 1.3 million signatures.