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Protest Against Scrapping EMA as vote is Lost

19-01-2011 23:23

Wednesday 19th January 2011. Market Square, Nottingham

Nottingham students again protested against scrapping the Educational Maintenance Allowance. I understand that the government plan to do this in September this year.

Nottingham students again protested against scrapping the Educational Maintenance Allowance. I understand that the government plan to do this in September this year.

Another rally was held in the square, before a short walk around the Square and nearby streets.

After Tuesdays and Saturdays demo, today, I noticed that police were wandering about next to branches of all the usual destinations: Top Shop, Boots, Vodafone and there was a massed turnout of security at entrances to the Victoria Centre.

This was organised to coincide with a Commons vote on EMA.  Education Maintenance Allowances (EMAs) were introduced by Labour to encourage young people from deprived backgrounds to stay in education and training after the age of 16.  However the government won by a majority of 59 votes.

Labour loses vote to stop scrapping of EMA grants


The Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA) is a means-tested allowance of between £10 and £30, paid to 16- to 19-year-olds who stay on in education.

Rolled out nationally in September 2004, EMA is intended to help with the cost of books, travel, equipment or anything useful to the continuation of learning. It’s paid straight into the pupil’s bank account, not their parents or their college, giving them independence and forcing them to take charge of a small weekly budget. The payments are under the condition that they attend classes regularly. If the pupil works hard or achieves good grades, there is the opportunity to earn bonuses.

EMA is available to 16-19 year olds who come from low income families and whose household’s net income is below £30,000 pa. There is an additional grant for those students from families household income is up to and below £20,000 pa. EMA currently exists all across the UK although the administering of it is devolved to the regional parliaments of Scotland and Northern Ireland.


On Saturday January 15, 2011 .... they did it all again

Nottingham Students another Protest Against Scrapping EMA

Earlier in the week [Tuesday 11th January] student had walked out of college and protested in the Market Square and Conservative HQ

Students Protest Against Scrapping EMA

Video: Nttm Students visit Conservative Party HQ - Demo

Video: Nttm Students visit Conservative Party HQ - Detained

Save EMA

Nottingham Students Against Fees and Cuts!

Notts Save Our Services
Defending jobs, services, welfare & education against cuts in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire

Smashed Windows & Graffiti @ Conservative Offices

2010 Notts Save Our Services Demo 1 The March

2010 Anti Cuts, Corporate Tax & Student Fees Demo [Video]

Photographer - Media: One Eye on the Road. Nottingham.  UK
Member of the National Union of Journalists [NUJ]
"It is not enough to curse the darkness.
                                   It is also necessary to light a lamp!!"

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Jim Sutton - undercover cop in Reclaim the Streets

19-01-2011 23:13

Reports on Jim Sutton an undercover cop who infiltrated Reclaim the Streets during the 1990's and had kids with an activist.

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Fabricating Terrorism III: British complicity in rendition and torture

19-01-2011 23:02

Cageprisoners releases the latest update on the report Fabricating Terrorism. This study will be presented to the UK inquiry into British complicity in rendition and torture.

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Hands off our Forest Cycle Rally

19-01-2011 22:22

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art + power new year show

19-01-2011 22:22

an inclusive art exhibition
To celebrate all the fantastic work we have done over the past year, art + power are putting on an exhibition in The Showroom, Park Street (opposite college green).

From Saturday the 22nd - Saturday 29th January,
Opening times: 11am – 6pm.
Opening night: 4 – 6 pm on Saturday the 22nd January

art + power is a Bristol based network of artists, volunteers and organisations working together to build creative communities.

We will be holding an exhibition of work in the showroom for a week, and using the gallery as a community space.

Everyone is welcome - we are particularly keen to hear from disabled and socially excluded artists and arts groups. We are always looking for people to get involved and join up- together we can work towards a more creative, fun and inclusive Bristol.

We will be talking about providing inclusive, accessible studio in Bristol and we want to hear your ideas – whether you are an artist looking for a space, a studio provider, or someone who works with disabled or socially excluded people.

We would love to see you there – it is promising to be a vibrant and varied show so please come along and start the new year on a creative note!

Full article | 2 additions | 5 comments

Gathering to discuss occupying space in sheffield

19-01-2011 19:42

first meeting to discuss ideas to occupy spaces in sheffield and south yorkshire for event space and community project. will look into potential sites and gauge amount of people would be planning on moving in and how many people can offer help. please pass this along to anyone you think might be interested.

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EMA: 4pm Piccadilly Circus

19-01-2011 19:22

a very short (and low quality) impression  from Piccadilly Circus, 19 January, 4pm.
people start gathering at the fountain for the EMA demo. sound system is playing loud music.

Full article | 1 addition | 151 comments

Kennedy Mania in the Mainstream Media

19-01-2011 19:01

The media has gone into a feeding frenzy over what was described by Newsnight as the "deepening controversy over police agents". Yet still none of them are putting together the evidence that political policing has been used to trash the 'right to protest' in this country,of which the use of undercover coppers is only a small part, with FIT Teams, kettling and general harrassment of protestors being other major parts of the ongoing police strategy. Perhaps this is because these same journos are part of the media circus that allows the cops to get away with it as we march towards water cannon and a police state.

However, the long term infiltration of environmental and direct action groups in the UK by PC Mark Kennedy for a seven year period, must be causing some discomfort for the cops, as his antics in the UK and ,according to the Guardian another 22 countries, are beginning to be unravelled.

Today's Independent claims that Kennedy, who is missing but believed to be in the USA, has called in publicity Guru Max Clifford as he "prepares to sell his story". The report further notes that Nottingham Police have launched an internal inquiry into the mess, which will run alongside a limited IPCC inquiry which 'Amerdeep Somal, of the IPCC, said will focus on the alleged failure of Nottinghamshire Police to disclose relevant material to prosecutors.'

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#CO11MetPolice hand out SaveEMA route + demo guide

19-01-2011 17:22

At today's Save EMA demonstration in central London, the police have been handing out leaflets which tell protesters what they can and can't do, or rather what they should and should not do!!

For the first time they are specifying the route of the march as agreed to by the organisers, and caution that "Attempts by demonstrators to deviate from the agreed route may result in officers stopping or slowing the progress of the march".

So there you have it kids.

Thankfully they also say that kettling or containment, "is used as a last resort, when there is serious disorder or to prevent an imminent breach of the peace. The containment will be in place for no longer than is necessary to deal with the issue. The officers will be mindful of your welfare and they will attempt to let you know what is happening and help you get out as soon as is practical."

Phew, that's ok then.


As well as telling people to move away from any disorder and not watch it (kind of like saying - if we start hitting people, don't look at us or take pictures!) they also give advice on how to grass up fellow demonstrators.

The CO11MetPolice twitter account was also sending out links to the pdf of the leaflet in advance of today's protest.

I'm sure we'll be seeing more of this at the big demonstration on Saturday 29th, and for sure probably on the huge TUC demo on 26th March.




Full article | 1 addition | 3 comments

Christian peace activist jailed for 30 days over arms fair protest

19-01-2011 16:27

Chris (left) with fellow citizen disarmers in September 2010
Message from Chris's wife:

"Chris was jailed today [19 Jan] for 30 days for non-payment of a fine relating to a protest at the DSEI arms far in 2009. Details below. He has been sent to Wandsworth Prison. Heathfield Road ,Wandsworth, London SW18 3HS,020 8588 4000. I don’t have a prison number yet, but will send one out when I do."

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An account of Marco Jacobs' time in Brighton

19-01-2011 15:57

"Marco Jacobs" was active in Brighton

Marco Jacobs was an undercover officer in Brighton in 2004/5

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Palestine Today 01 19 2011

19-01-2011 15:53

Welcome to Palestine Today, a service of the International Middle East Media Center,, for Wednesday, January 19 2011

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Statement from Cardiff Anarchist Network (CAN) on the infiltration by Mark ‘Marc

19-01-2011 15:49

This is our response to the revelation that our group had been infiltrated by Mark Jocobs for four years.

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Bristol Indymedia Presents: They Say Cut Back We Say Fight Back

19-01-2011 15:22


£4/3/no one turned away through lack of funds

On October 20th 2010 George Osborne announced plans to implement £81billion worth of cuts to public spending. Independent economic thinktanks such as the Institute for Fiscal Studies have described the cuts as highly regressive measures which will hit the poorest hardest, and that the cuts are the deepest seen in UK since the second world war.

Since the announcement of the cuts, there has been a growing wave of protests at the unnecessarily deep and poorly targeted cuts. The series of student led demonstrations against the 80% cut to the university teaching budget, tripling of tuition fees and removal of the education maintenance allowance have seen the 'post-ideological' ipod generation occupying university buildings and leading protests around the country. The UK Uncut direct action campaign has been highlighting the hypocrisy of a government that claims that 'we're all in it together' and then allows large corporations such as Vodaphone and the Arcadia group to avoid and evade billions in taxes while the poorest in society are hit the hardest. As time passes and the effects of the cuts start to bite, these campaigns and others like them are only going to intensify.

The government is determined to plough ahead with these savage, unnecessary, ideological cuts. But a growing protest movement is starting to stage the fight back. Join Bristol Indymedia for an evening of short films, invited speakers and discussion as to how best to resist the ConDem cuts.

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Thessaloniki 4 trial, update day #2

19-01-2011 15:22

Update from day #2 of the Court of Appeals of our four comrades in Thessaloniki, Greece. The day would be spent examining more police prosecution witnesses, including some policemen who had been involved in the arrest of Simon Chapman, and others who had arrested other demonstrators (not the Thessaloniki 4).

Background information at

by some attendants in solidarity

Monday 17 January 2011, 9am, Thessaloniki Courthouse.

The day would be spent examining more police prosecution witnesses, including some policemen who had been involved in the arrest of Simon Chapman, and others who had arrested other demonstrators (not the Thessaloniki 4).

The first 5 policemen each said they nothing of the case at trial - they had all arrested other people (not the current defendants) at the 21 June demonstration. They were examined on what is the normal procedure for taking an arrested person from the street to the police station for interrogation, and what would be done with anything found in their possession.

In each case, the idea was that where possible the arresting officer would take the arrested person and any items found in their possession in a police car and then to a police station, where the arresting officer would give their initial testimony and file a report of the arrestee's possessions.

In some cases where the arresting officer could not take the arrestee into the police station themselves, they would hand the person and their possessions over to an arrest team for delivery to a police station, and then give their testimony and sign documents later.

Police witness #6 had a slightly different role, as he was guarding the pre-interrogation team. However, he testified that lists of the names of the arrestees, their arresting officers and their possessions were made. Labels were improvised and stapled to the various rucksacks being brought in, which were stored securely. Arresting officers were not always present, but their names were logged.

Police witness #7 was a more challenging witness. He was part of the Athens-based riot squad which arrested Simon Chapman. He testified with absolute certainty, as he claimed (and same as all other members of the squad that arrested Simon) that Simon had thrown a molotov at his squad, that he had turned to run and had somehow slipped and fallen on to his back, thereby smashing a number of molotovs in the blue rucksack on his back.

Simon is accused to have been holding the black rucksack - containing 7 molotovs and two hammers - in his left hand, though when he fell and hurt himself he somehow managed not to break any in the black bag. As Simon was now covered in petrol from the broken bottles from the blue bag, the police thought it too dangerous to take it with them. They were ordered to move on to another position in Thessaloniki and took Simon with them for at least two hours of further confrontations with demonstrators, as there was no way to get him to police car for transfer to interrogation at a police station.

Police witness #7 was certain that no officers had hit Simon: any blood on him must have been come from an injury caused either by falling over, or perhaps by being hit by a stone thrown for other demonstrators, or maybe Simon fell on his face and then fell on his back. Simon's defense lawyer, Christos Bakelas, pointed out that none of this information appeared in this witness' testimony until after himself and the arresting riot squad had reviewed the rather embarrassing video tapes in November 2003.

Police witness #7 stated that his squad had moved many bags and weapons found in the street, so that they could not be used by any counter-attacking demonstrators. The earlier police witnesses (1-5) had all been asked if they had moved items from the street themselves, and they had all said they had not, as that was the job of another police team (see the report from day 1 of the trial).

Police witness #7 is the cop in the live TV footage who walks up to the TV camera and presents the contents of a black rucksack to be filmed. He presents a hammer to the film crew and puts it in the black bag, and then carries it over to where Simon is sitting and places it next to him.

Police witness #8 was questioned next, again largely about the arrest and custody procedure, as outlined for police witnesses 1-5. He was questioned on how or why the blue bag was never logged at the time of the arrest or when Simon was taken in to the police station. He said conditions were difficult that day.

Police witness #9 was the last for the day and was also part of the Athens riot squad that arrested Simon. He repeated all the same story about how they could supposedly "clearly identify" Simon as the person who threw the molotov at them, how he fell on his back, how they didn't know where all that blood came from, how he was most definitely not beaten. This was a little strange because this policeman was the one in the Reuters photo putting his boot into Simon's face.

This witness said he did not kick Simon, that he was just holding him still with his foot because his hands were full (of tear gas canisters). He was offended at all the outrageous lies reported in the media about Simon, as police were wholly concerned for his safety. He admitted reviewing the videos with the rest of the team before making his first statement in November 2003.

One of the last questions for this police witness was one of the most interesting: witness #9 said that there was a strong odour of petrol coming from the blue bag. He was asked if he took his gas mask off at any point during the day. He had not. So the question was pursued: if police witness #9 had his gas mask on at the time, how could he have detected the odour of petrol, given that a gas mask should filter out gases such as petrol fumes? No satisfactory answer was given.

Court ended at 15.12 GMT+2.

++ Spread the word

Please link to the Campaign's website on your web sites, forums, blogs, facebook profiles etc, tell friends and family and help to spread the word. Join and share the facebook page at:

or join and share the facebook group:

Solidarity for the Thessaloniki 4!

Films on YouTube:

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Cardiff Rally Against The Cuts

19-01-2011 15:16

Thursday 3rd February - 7:00pm
Transport House, Cathedral Road (opposite Westgate Pub)
Cardiff, CF11 9SB

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march and rally in Carlisle against the cuts

19-01-2011 15:10

Please come along to the march & rally on Sat 22nd Jan.

Full article | 6 comments

"Mark Stone" and the Achilles' Heel of Activism

19-01-2011 15:04

They called him "Flash": Kennedy made £50,000 a year undercover
The unmasking of activist "Mark Stone" as Police Constable Mark Kennedy has sent shockwaves through anti-capitalist groups around the UK. Police infiltration had long been considered a given by the more savvy demonstrators. But the fact that Kennedy had played such an integral part in the organisation of high profile direct actions - and police repression of them - has exposed the Achilles' heel of activism: its reliance on the good will of people who are often total strangers.

Full article | 1 comment

Questions for the EDL

19-01-2011 14:38

Having observed the EDL for a while and am completely flumoxed by their hatred and general nastiness, I've gathered together a few questions that the various EDL groups refuse to answer. Maybe some of those who read Indymedia would care to answer?

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Full Unemployment Cinema Education Special - Jan 30th, London

19-01-2011 14:23

"Down with teachers! Up with revolution!” EDUCATION FILM SPECIAL

Sunday 30th January 2011, 6PM
at Colourama
52-56 Lancaster Street,

Free Entry!!