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Climate Protesters Get Taste of Justice After Pulling Stunt at US Open

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Two men have been charged after they decided to stage a climate protest during a U.S. Open semifinal tennis match on Thursday.

Sayak Mukhopadhyay, 50, was charged with criminal trespass and disorderly conduct, while Gregory Schwedock, 35, was charged with criminal trespass, according to NBC News.

The fracas began while American Coco Gauff and Karolina Muchova of Czechia battled it out in the second set under the Arthur Ashe Stadium lights in Queens, New York.

Mukhopadhyay, Schwedock and another protester, Lindiwe Priscilla Krasin, stood up in the stands and chanted, “End fossil fuels!” The activists sported shirts with the same message.

Mukhopadhyay had glued his bare feet to the floor.

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The crowd booed the protesters and ultimately cheered as they were removed from the stadium by police. The protest caused a nearly 50-minute delay.

Mukhopadhyay and Krasin spoke with NBC about why they felt the need to disrupt the match.

“There is no tennis on a dead planet,” Mukhopadhyay said. “There is no art on a dead planet, everything that we take for granted as our way of life will cease to exist.”

“I understand the discomfort that the audience felt,” Krasin said. “But we can no longer feel comfortable at a time like this. We need the wake up calls.”

“It’s only a matter of time before things get much worse. So I protested because I’m terrified,” she added.

After play resumed, Gauff won the match. She commented on the protest afterward.

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“It was done in a peaceful way, so I can’t get too mad at it,” she said, according to ESPN.

“Obviously I don’t want it to happen when I’m winning … and I wanted the momentum to keep going. But hey, if that’s what they felt they needed to do to get their voices heard, I can’t really get upset at it.”

The incident was just the latest in a string of climate protests at sporting events.

“At Wimbledon in July, two matches were interrupted when environmental activists jumped out of the stands … and scattered orange confetti on the grass,” ESPN reported.

Protesters pulled a similar stunt at this year’s British Open, lighting a flare that left behind powdery orange residue on the course. Four individuals were arrested in that incident.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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