The Cenotaph and Winston Churchill’s statue in Parliament Square have been boarded up ahead of a weekend of protests.
The iconic monuments were hidden in boxes after Sadiq Khan pledged to ensure they are protected.
This photo shames Britain.— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) June 12, 2020
The fact Sir Winston Churchill’s statue has had to be boarded up to stop people vandalising it is disgraceful.
He saved our country from the Nazis – and THIS is how we repay him? Appalling. ? pic.twitter.com/keXi9RPaYn
Stay at home
It comes as the London mayor has pleaded with the public to stay at home to keep safe as anti-racism and far-right groups both plan protests in the capital this weekend.
He said he is “extremely concerned” that further protests in London, particularly by extreme far-right groups which “advocate hatred and division”, could lead to violence and disorder.
It comes as the Democratic Football Lads Alliance called on supporters to travel to London to protect monuments after a number were vandalised in recent protests.
Far-right figure Tommy Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, has expressed his support.
Catalyst for systemic, lasting change
Mr Khan said: “It is clear that the majority of the protesters have been peaceful. This moment must be a catalyst for systemic, lasting change to tackle the racism and inequalities that black people still face today, in this country and elsewhere.
“However, I’m extremely concerned that further protests in central London not only risk spreading Covid-19, but could lead to disorder, vandalism and violence.
“Extreme far-right groups who advocate hatred and division are planning counter-protests, which means that the risk of disorder is high.
“Be in no doubt these counter-protests are there to provoke violence, and their only goal is to distract and hijack this important issue.
“Staying home and ignoring them is the best response this weekend.”
Last weekend saw demonstrators clash with police in London, while in Bristol a statue of slave trader Edward Colston was pulled down and dumped in the city’s harbour.
Related: These protests could lead to real change. The hatemongers’ reaction proves it