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Climate activists storm stage of Les Misérables in London: "The show can't go on"

Five climate activists were arrested in London after they stormed the stage of the West End production of Les Misérables on Wednesday night, according to the city's Metropolitan Police.

Protesters from the climate action group Just Stop Oil took the stage with orange banners saying "The show can't go on" during the song "Do You Hear the People Sing," the group said in a statement.

Just Stop Oil said the activists locked themselves to the part of the set using bicycle locks at around 8:50 p.m., during the song's crescendo. They said theater technicians were unable to remove the locks, and the theater was emptied by 9:10 p.m.

"The show starts with Jean Valjean stealing a loaf of bread to feed his sister's starving child. How long before we are all forced to steal loaves of bread? How long before there are riots on the streets?" 23-year-old Hannah Taylor, who took part in the protest, said in the statement released by the group.

"Am I not, like Jean Valjean, justified in breaking the law to oppose this criminal government and its murderous policies?" Taylor said. "Ask yourself, will you, like the citizens of Paris in the play, stand by and watch, or will you stand up against our governments' criminal plans and call for an end to new oil and gas?"

Another young person who participated in the action, 19-year-old student Poppy Bliss, said she was terrified for the future.

"I don't want to be disrupting people's evenings out, but I have been left with no other choice," Bliss said in a statement. "Our government is betraying the young and putting everyone's futures on the line for the sake of a few votes. I am doing this because I am desperate."

Activists from Just Stop Oil have been staging events around the U.K. and Europe to bring attention to climate change that have included disrupting major sporting events and vandalizing museum pieces.

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