Climate activists planning to disrupt Heathrow Airport with drones have been arrested the day before their stunt.

Police said they will arrest protesters from Heathrow Pause if they fly the drones illegally near the airport on Friday.

But at least four people have been detained today, including Roger Hallam, who co-founded Extinction Rebellion.

He and another activist were handcuffed at a café in Bethnal Green, where the pair had been giving an interview to journalists.

They were taken away in separate cars, a Heathrow Pause spokesperson said.

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The group says its media officer, who had not stated any intention to fly a drone, has also been arrested, while other members’ homes have been cordoned off.

Undated handout videograb issued by LHR Pause Media of Mike Lynch-White being arrested in Bethnal Green, east London, on Thursday afternoon over plans to fly drones near Heathrow Airport. PA Photo. Issue date: Thursday September 12, 2019. See PA story PROTEST Heathrow. Photo credit should read: LHR Pause Media/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
Mike Lynch-White being was arrested in Bethnal Green (Picture: PA)
Undated handout videograb issued by LHR Pause Media of Roger Hallam, a co-founder of the Extinction Rebellion group, being arrested in Bethnal Green, east London, on Thursday afternoon over plans to fly drones near Heathrow Airport. PA Photo. Issue date: Thursday September 12, 2019. See PA story PROTEST Heathrow. Photo credit should read: LHR Pause Media/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.
Roger Hallam founded the Extinction Rebellion (Picture: PA)

The group called the incident a ‘preemptive arrest’, before tweeting: ‘This is to activists, rebels and ordinary people everywhere. Please stand with us. We all have to rise up.

‘If we are all arrested before we can stop this horrendous project then please continue where we left off.’

Mavis Eccleston, with daughter Joy and son Kevin, outside Stafford Crown Court after she was cleared of the murder and manslaughter of her husband Dennis. PA Photo date: Wednesday September 18, 2019. The 80-year-old, formerly of Huntington, near Cannock, gasped and started to cry after the unanimous verdicts were returned following a two-week trial. See PA story COURTS Eccleston. Photo credit should read: Matthew Cooper/PA WirePensioner cleared of husband's murder after they agreed to end their lives together

Police yesterday branded the planned protest a ‘deliberate and criminal’ attack on UK infrastructure.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Laurence Taylor suggested the stunt risked attracting ‘would-be terrorists’ as well as serious safety concerns and disruption.

He added: ‘As a result we’ve had to put a significant policing plan in place that drains resources from across the Metropolitan Police.’

File photo dated 25/02/17 of a drone flying in Hanworth Park in west London, as environmental campaigners from Heathrow Pause - a splinter of the Extinction Rebellion movement - have said they plan to fly drones around Heathrow airport in a bid to ground flights at the transport hub.
The stunt was planned for tomorrow (Picture: PA)
The AUDS (Anti-UAV Defence System) anti-drone system, which can detect, track and ground drones, deployed on top of a vehicle at Heathrow airport in London. Departures from the airport were temporarily suspended on January 8 after reports of drone activity.
The AUDS anti-drone system, which can detect, track and ground drones, deployed on top of a vehicle at Heathrow airport in London. (Picture: PA Archive)

Heathrow Pause met with police on Tuesday to discuss their plans for Heathrow.

The activists said they were ‘utterly committed to the principles of non-violence, transparency and accountability and to cooperating with the police as far as is possible’.

Hallam said at the time: ‘I’ll be flying a drone at head height, some distance from Heathrow. It’ll be 100 per cent safe and 100 percent illegal.’

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