British woman previously accused of marrying an Islamic State terrorist arrested in connection with an Extinction Rebellion blockade
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A British mother who has previously been accused of marrying an ISIS fighter was among 51 people arrested in the UK in connection with an Extinction Rebellion blockade on Friday.
Natalie Bracht, 45, appeared by video link at Luton Magistrates’ Court on Monday after the group blocked printing presses, preventing the delivery of national newspapers.
The mother of nine has previously been accused of travelling to Syria. She has never been charged with a terrorism offence and denies she was in the country.
On Monday, a district judge entered a not guilty plea on her behalf to allegations of blocking a motorway and police.
Ms Bracht, who has no previous convictions, has claimed she was interrogated by counter-terrorism police when she returned from Germany this year.
“They asked me where I had stayed in Syria. I had to tell them a couple of times, ‘Guys, I wasn’t in Syria’,” she told The Sunday People.
Ms Bracht has been released on conditional bail to appear at St Albans Magistrates’ Court along with 50 other suspects this year, and was ordered not to attend any Extinction Rebellion protests.
Others charged included teachers, a businesswoman, an art student, a town councillor and an author.
Extinction Rebellion, which is holding 10 days of protests, accuses the newspapers’ owners of “failing to report accurately on the climate and ecological emergency”.
Protesters blocked the roads with vehicles and chained themselves to obstacles to stop delivery lorries leaving the plants.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson accused demonstrators of trying to stifle free speech.
Home Secretary Priti Patel has reportedly ordered a review of legislation, including possibly designating Extinction Rebellion as an organised crime group.
Ms Patel wrote in the Daily Mail on Monday that activists should “face the full force of the law” because of “guerrilla tactics” that disrupt daily life.
Source: The National