A group of right-wing protesters wheeled a homemade gallows outside a hall where London’s Muslim mayor was about to speak and tried to arrest him for disrespecting U.S. President Donald Trump, The Washington Post reported.
Mayor Sadiq Khan laughed it off, calling the protesters “very stable geniuses.” The crack was a dig at Trump, who said earlier this month in a tweet amid concerns about his mental fitness that he is a “very stable genius.”
The half-dozen protesters calling themselves the White Pendragons managed to delay Khan’s planned speech on gender equality before members of the liberal Fabian Society for several minutes, The Guardian reported. They accused the mayor of “treachery” and “treason,” though it wasn’t entirely clear why. The gallows was decorated with a white dragon and the words: “Take Back Control.” The men waved an American flag and shouted pro-Brexit slogans.
#Fab18 conference slightly delayed by Trump supporters who wouldn't let Sadiq Kahn speak. The police had to intervene and remove the group of – in Kahn's words – 'very stable geniuses' pic.twitter.com/d7sVx9Dc1j
— Mafalda Dâmaso (@DrMafaldaDms) January 13, 2018
One of the protesters, David Russell, was identified by the British press as a member of the far-right English Defense League and the host of an anti-Islam radio program.
Asked several times for some clarity on what their objection to the Fabians is. They claim Fabians are subverting the constitution of the UK and one quoted the Magna Carta. Not entirely clear how they think Fabians are doing this. pic.twitter.com/RZgjYEEbBx
— Paul Brand (@PaulBrandITV) January 13, 2018
The group failed to make a citizen’s arrest of the mayor and was escorted from the venue by security guards.
As for disrespecting Trump, Khan has long butted heads with the president and declared himself “no fan.”
Big night ahead for our friends in the US. May the best candidate win.. (and I hope she does!) #ElectionDay
— Sadiq Khan (@SadiqKhan) November 8, 2016
Trump in turn has mocked Khan on Twitter because of terror attacks in his city.
After Trump announced Thursday he was canceling his trip to Britain, Khan said that the president “got the message” that Londoners don’t agree with his policies and that he would have been met with “mass protests.”
Many Londoners have made it clear that Donald Trump is not welcome here while he is pursuing such a divisive agenda. It seems he’s finally got that message. pic.twitter.com/YD0ZHuWtr3
— Sadiq Khan (@SadiqKhan) January 12, 2018
Trump claimed he was canceling his trip because he could not support an Obama administration deal to sell the U.S. Embassy there. The decision to sell the real estate was actually made by George W. Bush administration officials.
Reason I canceled my trip to London is that I am not a big fan of the Obama Administration having sold perhaps the best located and finest embassy in London for “peanuts,” only to build a new one in an off location for 1.2 billion dollars. Bad deal. Wanted me to cut ribbon-NO!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 12, 2018
- This article originally appeared on HuffPost.