Thousands hold protests ahead of UN climate summit

Climate change protests organised across world on eve of UN climate conference

Photo by: AFP
Photo by: AFP

Human chains have been formed across cities in France on November 29, 2015, protesting against global warming

Tens of thousands of people on Sunday attended protests which were organised in 70 countries ahead of Monday’s United Nations climate conference in Paris.  

World leaders will gather in Paris on Monday to reach a global agreement on the matter of acting against climate change in unity.

The summit will take place in France as the country is dressing its wounds after deadly attacks hit its capital on November 13, killing 130 people.

French people set more than 20,000 shoes down on Sunday in the Place de la Republique of Paris in the memory of victims of the deadly carnage. According to the organisers, the Vatican also sent a pair of shoes on behalf of Pope Francis.  

French President Francois Hollande made it clear that he did not want to delay the summit, dubbed COP21 and showed his determination to host world leaders in the country without paying heed to terrorism threats.  

Security measures were tightened in the streets of Paris on the eve of COP21 to prevent possible terror attacks.  

All major public gatherings were banned and cancelled ahead of the summit under state of emergency which was declared after the bloody attacks.  

Climate change activists have been put under house arrest as part of measures that have been taken, according to the France’s Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve.

According to Cazeneuve, the 24 activists were suspected of planning violent protests.


Until December 12, the group has to remain under night curfew and local police will report three times a day about their situations.

Greenpeace International's executive Director Kumi Naidoo described himself as "disappointed", in regards to this situation .  

Kumi said France would "choose to enable sporting events, trade exhibitions and other arts and culture events to go ahead, but with such a clamp down on the space for the biggest issue humanity faces."

However, a 3 km long human chain was formed on Sunday with the participation of 10,000 people from the Place de la Republique to Place de la Nation.

Iain Keith, campaign director from Avaaz organisation said “This is a moment for the whole world to join hands.”

About 2,000 climate events took place in major cities all around the world, including Sydney, Berlin, London, Sao Paulo and New York.

Protesters demonstrate during a rally held the day before the start of the Paris Climate Change Summit in Berlin, Germany, November 29, 2015.

Nearly 45,000 people gathered in Sydney and formed the largest climate march ever held in the city.

Protesters held banners that wrote “There is no Planet B,” and “Say no to burning national forests for electricity.”

In Hong Kong protesters carried styrofoam polar bears holding signs reading “homeless and hungry” and “please help” to draw attention to melting Arctic ice.


TRTWorld and agencies