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Civil Liberties Again Suspended

07.04.2003 07:39

As part of "Reclaim the Bases", 180 protestors travelled to Northwood, Britian's military HQ on Sunday 6th April. 60 protestors were illegally detained at Northwood tube station and then forced back onto the tube trains! Another 60 protestors were illegally detained in a pen outside the main gates to the base (pics) (timeline of events).

Despite the mass policing operation 20 protestors staged a sit down in the road near the main gates, 6 were arrested (pics). Police applied pressure points to protestors and left some bleeding after dragging them accross the street (pics). Other small road blockades were also held on the other side of the base and 6 women stripped naked in protest against the war and the police actions.

At one point the police kidnapped 3 people walking around the streets near the base, drove them to the pen and forced them to join the people inside the pen, where protestors were detained. Many others where physically forced into the detention pen even when they said they did not wish to join the protest. Up to 90 people will now file a formal complaint with the police for illegal detention. (Similarly many protestors are also planning legal action following the illegal detention of 3 coach loads of people from London who tried to attend a demonstration at USAF Fairford on 24th March - see previous features)

Based on legal advice received by people at Northwood, there is no legal basis for the police action. Sian Jones of anti-war group d10 said "All over Britain, police are increasingly abusing their powers to prevent people protesting against this war. This in an extension of the war, to stamp out protest. While our Government is breaking international law in Iraq by attacking civilians with missiles, cluster bombs, tanks and machine guns, they are also breaking human rights law at home."

police use pressure points
police use pressure points

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