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Cindy Sheenan supporters threatened with arrest.

zcat | 11.12.2005 13:03 | Anti-militarism | Repression | London

Cindy Sheenan supporters and well wishers have gathered to meet her in Parliment Square, London, this morning while waiting for her to arrive to meet with Brian Haw they have been threatened with arrest.

At 12 oclock this morning, a crowd of well wishers turned up in Parliment Square to meet Cindy Sheehan who is going to meet with Brian Haw who is camped on Parliament Square and has been there for over 4 years.
About 60 people in all probably, half of them are media, half of those independent media and campaign groups media.
At about 12.30, the police turned up and the officer in charge said he thought this was an illegal demonstration and read out the offensive law (which I cant remember what exactly it is called) and told people that if they had not dispersed by 1.15 then they would all be arrested.
None of the people there are demonstrating! they told the cop that this was a social gathering and had little to do with a demonstration but he would have none of it.
Its now 1.05 we shall see what happens.

Background :-
The government has introduced an exclusion order for the area around Parliament this exclusion zone prohibits demonstrations, even one-person demonstrations, unless the police expressly permit them. Failure to comply can lead to arrest. The zone covers a very wide area around Parliament as far as the London Eye, Charing Cross embankment and up to (although not including) Trafalgar Square. This zone is ostensibly to deal with one protest, Brians the exclusion order’s range will prohibit a large number of other protests outside parliament, Downing St and government buildings.



at 1.15

11.12.2005 13:25

The police are handing out their Serious Crime Bill leaflets at 1.15 and saying that people are now at risk of arrest.
Cindy has arrived and is chatting to people.
There has also been a group doing a picnic, handing out cups of tea to people there. They have now been formally asked to move outside the exclusion zone even though noone is actually demonstrating.
My contact says there is only 1 police car and 1 van and a handfull of cops so they will need more if they want to arrest everyone.


at 1.40pm

11.12.2005 13:59

Its 1.40 now and a crowd of around 100 people with Brian Haw and Cindy Sheehan have started to walk out of Parliment Square towards Downing street. They ar chanting and singing anti-war slogans, from the call I received it sounded like a very noisy demo which it now is!
This impromptu demo is the direct result of the police harresment of a peacefull social gathering.

NEXT UPDATE coming faster than I can type 1.50pm
The impromptu demo has reached Downing Street and Mark Barrett (apartntly featured in yesterdays Independent newpaper) who is one of the people who orginised the picnic has been told that if he swears again he will be arrested.
Cindy Sheeehan is trying to enter Downing Street to talk to the co conspiritor of the Iraq war Mr Blair. Officer CX3 is talking to people in the crowd trying to get them to move on up to Trafalger Square out of the exclusion zone. (with little success it sounds like



11.12.2005 14:06

My contact says that Cindy has been told that she may get to meet with Tony Blair (unlikely as this may be).
The rest of the crowd has (so as not to jeopardize this meeting) agreed to move on up to Trafalger Square.



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