RBS protests underway across the UK

RBS protests underway across the UK

Date: 28 April 2010

Protests are underway across the UK targeting the RBS AGM over its investments in toxic projects and companies. In London, protesters gathered outside the Threadneedle Street RBS branch and a tar sands digger was used to highlight the devastating impact of extracting tar sands on Indigenous communities’ land and lives.

Protestors in front of a yellow digger

Elsewhere in the UK, hundreds of protestors are targeting local branches of RBS demanding that their bank stops using public funds to finance ‘the most destructive and devastating companies in the world’, such as tar sands and mining companies because of the impact on indigenous communities and climate change.

In Edinburgh, shareholders are entering the RBS AGM now and are being greeted by protesters from Friends of the Earth Scotland, Amnesty International Scotland, SEAD, Rainforest Action Network, Indigenous Environmental Network, all angry about RBS investing in tar sands and mining companies.

Canadian indigenous activist and campaigner for the Rainforest Action Network, Eriel Tchekwie Deranger will be inside the AGM to question executives directly about the impact of RBS tar sands investments on her community.

She explained, “UK taxpayers have a right to know how their money is being spent. RBS is currently financing the largest and most destructive industrial project on the planet destroying my people, my community and my traditional lands. With strong government leadership, the bank should be adopting strong policies that respect free, prior and informed consent of Indigenous communities and ensures the protection of the environment and water. I hope the UK will put its money where its mouth is by pulling RBS’ business out of the tar sands.”

Deborah Doane, director of the World Development Movement said:
“As RBS AGM takes place behind closed doors in Edinburgh, campaigners stood up around the country to remind RBS who their shareholders really are: it’s the British taxpayer. Taxpayers’ money has no business in funding projects like tar sands that cause immense harm to the indigenous communities that live near them, while exacerbating climate change. Tar sands investment flies in the face of government policy, negating our commitments in the Climate Change Act, and our obligations to promote and uphold international human rights.”