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Two climate activists arrested after vandalising the British prehistoric site of Stonehenge with paint

The monument concerned is one of the oldest and most important in both the UK and the world.

Una imagen tomada de un video publicado por el grupo de campaña climática Just Stop Oil muestra a activistas rociando una sustancia naranja en Stonehenge en Wiltshire, suroeste de Inglaterra

(Photo / Just Stop Oil)

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(AFP) Two activists from the environmental group Just Stop Oil were arrested on Wednesday for spraying paint on the monoliths of Britain's famous prehistoric Stonehenge site, police and the environmental group announced.

Police in Wilshire, southwest England, said in a statement that they had arrested two suspects, while Just Stop Oil, which calls for an end to fossil fuel exploitation, claimed responsibility for the action, saying the powdered paint used "will soon wash away in the rain".

A video circulating on social media shows two men running towards the enormous stones that form a circle at the prehistoric site in south-west England, spraying the monoliths with orange powder, while others attempt to stop them.

"Officers went to the site and arrested two people suspected of damaging the monument," police said, as the site prepares to welcome miles of visitors during the summer solstice.

The substance "will soon disappear in the rain, but not the urgent need for effective government action to mitigate the catastrophic consequences of the climate and ecological crisis," the environmental organization said on X.

Built in various stages between approximately 3000 and 2300 BC, Stonehenge is one of the most important prehistoric megalithic monuments in the world because of its size, sophisticated floor plan and architectural precision.

Its standing stones, which form a set of mysterious circles, attract miles of people each year for the pagan summer solstice festivities.

British Conservative Prime Minister Rishi Sunak denounced "a shameful act of vandalism against one of the oldest and most important monuments in the UK and the world".

For the past two years, the government has had to deal harshly with the organization, which has attacked works of art, disrupted sporting events and interrupted live shows.

As a result, the Conservative government has tightened the law on the right to demonstrate in an attempt to prevent the actions of this group, founded in February 2022, which calls for an end to the exploitation of fossil fuels by 2030.

Labor leader Keir Starmer, the favorite to become prime minister after the 4 July election, which could bring an end to 14 years of Conservative leadership, has also denounced the environmental activists' actions.