Police arrest 'key Just Stop Oil organisers' - but group says they were just having soup

Six people have been arrested at a Just Stop Oil meeting in east London, including some suspected of being "key organisers" for the climate protest group, police say.

The Metropolitan Police said in a statement: "We know Just Stop Oil plan to disrupt airports and thousands of holidaymakers this summer."

The force said it made the arrests on Thursday evening under a new section of the Public Order Act "which makes it illegal to conspire to disrupt national infrastructure projects".

"We believe some of those in custody are key organisers for Just Stop Oil," it said.

The climate demonstration group said the police force had "raided a soup night".

The group also claimed another person was arrested while staying with their parents.

In a video of the arrests posted by Just Stop Oil on X, officers were seen telling the room of people they were "detained at this time".

The clip then cut to a woman being arrested while she told the officer: "I've come here for soup."

Another officer told a man in handcuffs: "By taking part in the organisation of this event this evening, I suspect that you are taking part to plot to cause serious disruption to UK airports."

A different person was then shown being arrested in the hallway of a house, as officers searched their pockets.

In the Met Police statement, the force said: "We continue to work with airport operators and others to prevent significant disruption.

"Activists do not have the right to commit criminal acts that may also endanger themselves and others. Anyone who disrupts the safety and security of an airport can expect to be dealt with swiftly and robustly."

Last week, two women were charged with criminal damage and other offences after Just Stop Oil activists sprayed private jets with orange paint at Stansted Airport.

The pair are alleged to have caused more than £5,000 worth of damage.

Essex Police said their officers responded to an incident in the private area of an airfield at the airport last Thursday.

The force confirmed the private jet of pop star Taylor Swift, which Just Stop Oil said had landed at Stansted "mere hours before", was not at the airport.