G20 Protests: Climate Camp Crushed, Protester Dies

Rachel Holdsworth
By Rachel Holdsworth Last edited 109 months ago
G20 Protests: Climate Camp Crushed, Protester Dies

climate_camp2.jpg
Tents, bunting and fluffiness at Climate Camp yesterday / image courtesy of Zaykoski from the Londonist Flickr pool
As predicted yesterday, police broke up the Climate Camp on Bishopsgate. Reader ohmyliver drew our attention to a film of riot police using shields to hit non-violent protesters with their arms in the air, although this film of protesters at Bank throwing barriers at police, and get baton charged in response, shows the differences in vibe at different points of the City. However, it was pretty obvious to anyone who went down to Climate Camp that it was peaceful and we question the use of police tactics in such a situation.

Protesters were also searched on the way out of the camp, and Indymedia reminds us that the UK Parliament Joint Committee on Human Rights recently expressed concern at police use of anti-terrorism legislation against peaceful protesters. There were also reports that police were trying to delete images from people's cameras using recent legislation that we highlighted in February.

The papers are leading with news that a demonstrator died after being found unconscious and not breathing at the Bank around 7.30pm last night (and that police and medics were attacked when they went in to help). There's no news yet on cause of death.

About 90 people were arrested by the end of yesterday for offences including possession of knives, violent disorder, burglary and arson. Most arrests happened towards the end of the day (at 9pm police were reporting 24 arrests) - did most of the trouble happen after people were released from the kettles? Which leads us back to the question we were pondering last night: does the use of kettles actually provoke, rather than defuse, violence by making people frustrated and ramping up confrontation? Or does the late night violence back up their use?

And while we're talking about kettles... the Telegraph reports that around 40 "'black bloc' anarchists" were intent on causing trouble at the Bank yesterday. Yet thousands of people were detained.

So that was yesterday. There's already been a giant game of monopoly outside the Stock Exchange (more police and press than protesters again) and riot police appear to be taking station outside the rampART social space in Whitechapel, which is running a cafe throughout the G20. Protesters are also planning a slow march from Bishopsgate to Bank in memory of the dead man from yesterday. Indymedia reports that Bank is "swarming with police" who are carrying out searches under Section 60 of the Criminal Justice & Public Order Act 1994. There's a smallish protest outside the ExCel centre as well.

Last Updated 02 April 2009

johnny51

The later arrests were mainly at climate camp.

The kettle was started here about 7:30pm, no one was released until about 9pm when slowley small groups were allowed to leave. most of the arrests would have occured when the charged the camp aroun 1 in the morning broke up everything and bashed anyone in their way...

RachelH

I wonder whether any of the arrests for knives (or 'sharpened implements', as I think I've seen them referred to elsewhere) were knives for, you know, cooking? Because it was a campsite?

ides_of_march

Look on the bright side: there's one less person exhaling that evil CO2 that is killing Mother Earth.

Dave

It seems that the first video link (of the police attacking the climate camp) no longer works (or at least it doesn't for me). But this almost identical one does, at the moment: http://london.indymedia.org.uk...

It's quite something. Much as I believe that many lies can be told through judicious editing and camera angles (see what the Daily Mail have managed today), it's hard to come up with any legitimate justification to support the clear footage of police repeatedly hitting people in the head when they are just passively standing still with their hands raised.

Ezzye

This year's G20 protest have been hi-jacked by the media.

Even before the first march began, the police were warning that it would be violent.

What could have been a green carnival, in spring sunshine, has effectively been shut down by scare stories.

Another media victim was in the news today, Jade Goody, still popular in death despite the media's attempts to demonise her.

See here for 10 ways to beat the system [JADE GOODY] and its connection to G20 protests.