Police try find pro-Palestine activist who threw mice into McDonald's

Police try find pro-Palestine activist who threw mice into McDonald's

October 31, 2023

Police launch probe to track down activist who threw dozens of mice painted in Palestinian flag colours into a Birmingham McDonald’s leaving horrified customers screaming – as force say they are treating it as a ‘public nuisance offence’ 

Police have launched an investigation to track down the pro-Palestine activist who emptied a box of mice painted in the colour of the Palestinian flag onto the floor of a McDonald’s before shouting ‘f*** Israel’ as horrified diners screamed.

Shocking footage shared on social media last night showed the man chucking the rodents on the floor of the packed restaurant.  

Diners were waiting for meals in the branch at the Star City leisure complex in Birmingham as the mice – spray painted in the colours of the Palestinian flag – were sent scurrying across the floor. 

McDonald’s confirmed last night that a ‘number of mice’ were released into the restaurant and it insisted the branch, now reopened, was ‘fully sanitised’ after the rodents were removed.

The one-man protest is part of wider calls to boycott McDonald’s – who have offered free meals to IDF soldiers – along with Starbucks and Disney, for allegedly favouring Israel during the ongoing conflict. 

Now West Midlands Police have announced it will be launching an investigation in a bid to find the protester, with his demonstration  ‘being treated as a public nuisance offence’. 

Footage posted on social media shows dozens of mice that have been painted green, black, white and red, representing the four colours that make up the Palestinian flag

The video later shows a man arriving at the fast food chain’s Star City restaurant yesterday evening with a huge box of mice 

The man, who is also wearing a Palestinian flag on his head, can be seen throwing the box of miceon the floor towards two women who immediately run away in horror

#macdonalds #ratsatmcdonalds #rats #india #starcity #viral

A statement on X from the force added: ‘We’re investigating after live rodents were thrown into a restaurant off Watson Road, Nechelles, at around 5.30pm yesterday.

‘We understand the distress this will have caused and it’s not acceptable in any circumstances.

‘This is currently being treated as a public nuisance offence and we’ve active lines on enquiries to identify, and then arrest, who was involved’. 

The video comes days after another pro-Palestine protest was held outside a McDonald’s in Bristol, seeing supporters shout ‘boycott McDonald’s’ after accusing the fast food chain of ‘killing innocent people’. 

The clip, captioned ‘enjoy your rat burgers’, begins with a man holding onto fake number plates that read ‘PAIISTN’ and ‘Free Palestine’ as he arrived in his car.

The man, wearing a Palestinian flag around his head, opened the boot of his car and grabbed the box of rodents before walking into the fast food chain, spilling them onto the ground. 

In the footage, two women run away in horror as the mice scuttle across the restaurant floor. The activist can be heard repeatedly shouting ‘Free f***ing Palestine’ as walks back to his car, later adding ‘Boycott Israel’ and ‘F*** Israel’ before driving off. 

At the end of the footage, a block of text on the screen reads: ‘Targetted boycott. The Big Three. Start by boycotting these brands that are directly involved in supporting the Israeli apartheid.’ 

READ MORE: Police in Manchester seen pulling down posters of Israeli hostages after Met Police slammed for removing flyers to ‘avoid inflaming tensions’ – as local council removes Palestine mural over fears it will be trashed by vandals

Towards the end of the video, a recording of a phone call is also played as one man can be heard bragging: ‘All the alarms and going off and that ‘the doors are closed’.  A second voice then adds: ‘Successful mission’. 

Other footage, thought to be filmed by customers inside the store, shows staff in the McDonald’s store using boxes to shove the rodents out of the automatic doors, onto the street. 

Animal rights group Viva! said it was ‘deeply distraught’ about the use of animals in the protest.

Faye Lewis, who works for the campaign group, told MailOnline:  ‘While freedom of speech is important, and while all of us are deeply distraught with what is happening in the Middle East right now – anyone who has seen any footage would be hard moved not to be heartbroken – using poor mice and rats and setting them free in a McDonald’s is not the way to make a political point.

‘The fact the video shows the mice being hurled at people is animal cruelty plain and simple. If the protestor’s point is to object to suffering, then contributing towards further cruelty, is poor execution.

‘It’s hard to see the scenes unfolding in the news for anybody with empathy, but inflicting fear and confusion to these sentient and empathic mice and rats and disgustedly, throwing them at people in the process, seems like a misguided way to object to suffering.’

A spokesperson for McDonald’s told MailOnline: ‘We are aware of an incident in our Birmingham Star City restaurant this evening. The restaurant has been fully sanitised and our pest control partners have been called out to conduct a full inspection.’

The video, posted on Wednesday, showed a young woman leading chants in support of ‘Free Palestine’, while around 20 other people join in waving Palestinian flags and holding placards. 

The woman can be heard shouting ‘Boycott McDonald’s’, before repeating, ‘Shame on McDonalds for funding Israel. Who are killing innocent people’. 

McDonald’s confirmed ‘a number of mice’ were released inside the Birmingham Star City restaurant (pictured), which has now been ‘fully sanitised’ after the creatures were removed

The video, posted on Wednesday, showed a young woman leading chants in support of ‘Free Palestine ‘, as roughly 20 other people join in with Palestinian flags and placards

This is the dramatic moment Palestinian supporters shout ‘boycott McDonalds’ as they gather outside a branch in Bristol

The protest came after the firm backed giving free meals to Israeli soldiers.

A post on social media said McDonald’s Israel has so far given out 100,000 free meals but the chain has been quick to distance itself from the Israeli military’s actions. 

Franchise groups in Kuwait, Pakistan and other countries issued statements confirming that they did not share ownership with the Israeli franchise.  Others also noted that they had made financial donations to aid those in Gaza.

The latest demonstrations are just in a series of rallies held across the UK in support of the people of Palestine.

On Saturday more than 100,000 demonstrators arrived in London, with major protests taking place in Glasgow, Belfast and Bath for the third week in a row. 

Met police made a second arrest in London as a man in Waterloo Station was heard shouting ‘racist remarks’

British Transport Police officers are surrounded by hundreds of pro-Palestine protesters outside Embankment station

Thousands of pro-Palestinian protesters take part in a demonstration by the Palestinian Solidarity UK organisation in Central London

In the capital, the solidarity march turned ugly, after a police officer was hospitalised after being hit on the head with an ‘object’ during a sit-in protest at Waterloo, as fireworks and flares were let off on a statue of David Lloyd George. 

More than 200 people staged a sit-in on the concourse of the station, chanting ‘ceasefire now’, according to activist group Sisters Uncut. 

The protesters have been calling for a ceasefire in the Israel-Gaza war. 

It comes as Suella Braverman ordered a review of terrorism and extremism laws after UK police called for clarity over language used at pro-Palestinian demonstrations.

The Home Office said on Sunday it will consider whether new criminal offences are needed to bridge the gap between countering hate speech and terrorism, the Mail understands.

It came after Metropolitan Police chief Sir Mark Rowley renewed his calls for a fresh look at the legal definition of extremism and how police should respond.

However, any tweaks to the law will not provide a short-term solution to the febrile atmosphere in the wake of Hamas’s terror attack and Israel’s ongoing retaliation. 

The review is likely to take months and any proposed legal changes would be unlikely to be brought in by the end of next year.

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