Sadiq Khan responds to blimp protest: 'If people want to look at me in a yellow bikini they’re welcome'

Sadiq Khan responds to blimp protest: 'Yellow's not really my colour'

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Sadiq Khan has shared his feelings on the ‘bikini blimp’ protest set to take place on Saturday.

A 29-foot balloon depicting the London Mayor in a yellow bikini - inspired by his banning of Protein World’s ‘beach body ready’ ads in 2016, which depicted a woman in a yellow bikini’ - will fly over Parliament Square from 9.30-11.30am, seven weeks after the ‘Trump Baby’ blimp did the same thing.

"If people want to spend their Saturday looking at me in a yellow bikini they’re welcome to do so – I don’t really think yellow’s my colour though,” Khan said in a statement.


'Under Khan we've seen crime sky rocket'

The Sadiq blimp in in storage in a warehouse in Banbury ahead of its flight. Image: Yanny Bruere/Twitter

A City Hall spokesperson said it was working with police to ensure the protest was safe.

“The City Hall city operations team has spoken with the organisers of this balloon and given permission for them to use Parliament Square Garden,” they said.

"As always, City Hall has been working in very close coordination with the Metropolitan Police and other key agencies to ensure this protest is able to be carried out in a safe and secure way."

A Crowdfunder page set up by the protest’s organiser Yanny Bruere, who describes himself as a free speech advocate, says: "In light of the Donald Trump 'Baby Trump' ballon being allowed to fly over London during his visit to the UK., let's get a 'baby Khan' one and see if FREE SPEECH applies to all and whether or not Mr Khan and the London assembly will also approve this.

"Under Sadiq Khan, we have seen crime sky rocket to unprecedented levels. People in London don't feel safe and they aren't safe, 81 murders this year alone! Khan Out.

"Any surplus money raised will be used for a continuing campaign to remove Sadiq Khan from office and also for defending free speech which is constantly under attack."

The crowdfunder has raised £58,533.


'Free speech'

The blimp was originally going to to depict Khan as a baby wearing a nappy.

After criticism for letting the Trump blimp fly, Khan said: "I shouldn't be the arbiter, as a politician, of what's in good taste or bad taste, what's important is it to be peaceful, and for it to be safe.

"And, frankly speaking, the idea that we limit the rights to protest, we limit the rights to free speech because it may cause offence to a foreign leader is a very, very slippery slope."