Priti Patel has been described as extremely 'out of touch' with many who are part of the Black Lives Matter movement after she criticised the demonstrations.

The Home Secretary said she also disagreed with the act of taking a knee as a protest against racism.

The anti-racism protests were sparked by the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, USA, on May 25 last year after a white police officer held him down by pressing his knee into his neck for almost nine minutes.

The Home Secretary told LBC radio: “Last summer was quite a moment with all the protest that we saw taking place.

“We saw policing as well coming under a great deal of pressure from some of the protest. I don’t support protest and I also did not support the protests that were associated…”

Interrupted, she sought to clarify that she was not criticising the right to protest but rather the “dreadful” action last year.

Asked if she would take a knee, Ms Patel said: “No, I would not. I would not have at the time either.

“There are other ways in which people can express their opinions. Protesting in the way in which people did last summer was not the right way at all.”

Asked if she agrees with the gesture more generally, she replied: “No.”

Sabby Dhalu, Stand up to Racism Co-Convenor said: “For the Home Secretary to describe Black Lives Matter protests as ‘dreadful’ and oppose footballers and rugby players taking the knee, it is absolutely appalling.

"This Trump style attack on Black Lives Matter should have no place in British politics. We have seen more leadership on tackling racism from sports players than the government. We need action on eradicating institutional racism in policing and other sectors - that would be the correct response to the Black Lives Matter demonstrations.”

Weyman Bennett, co convenor Stand Up To Racism, said: "Anti racists will continue to both take the knee and build BLM. This divide and rule approach must be rejected by all who wish to keep our multi racial society flourishing.

"In words that could have come from various far right figures, Priti Patel's rhetoric is both insulting and dangerous."

"The powerful Black Lives Matter movement that erupted in rage at the murder of George Floyd and reverberated around the globe shows the scale of anti racism and potential for a mass anti racist movement that can turn the tide.

"On 20 March, the global day of protest for UN Anti Racism Day is a crucial day of solidarity that can help grow the anti racist movement everywhere."