London cathedral suspends legal action vs. protesters

Published November 2, 2011

Authorities at London’s St. Paul’s Cathedral suspended legal action against anti-corporate protesters who have camped out on the church’s doorstep. Photo: Godrick/Shutterstock

London– Authorities at London’s St. Paul’s Cathedral have decided to suspend legal action against scores of anti-corporate protesters who have occupied tents on the church’s doorstep for more than two weeks.

St. Paul’s officials said on Nov.1 that they "are committed to a peaceful solution at all costs" to the impasse that had closed the cathedral’s doors for the first time since World War II, Religion News Service reports.

Meanwhile, the City of London Corporation, the local government entity with jurisdiction over St. Paul’s, said it would give the protesters 48 hours to decamp with their tents, or else face legal action to evict them. The corporation said it would oust the protesters on grounds that their demonstration outside the cathedral is an "unreasonable use of the highway."

However, as of mid-afternoon on Nov.1, there was no sign that any eviction letters had been sent. The dispute around the 300-year-old cathedral has cost the jobs of three clerics-Dean Graeme Knowles, Canon Chancellor Giles Fraser and part-time chaplain the Rev. Fraser Dyer-who resigned over how to handle the demonstrations.

The protesters, identifying themselves as the Occupy London Stock Exchange movement, set up camp on Oct.15 as part of a global demonstration against "inequalities and greed" in the corporate world.


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