On Tuesday Tuesday 30 October protestors returned to the London Mexican Embassy to remember Brad Will and those who died in last year's civil uprising in Oaxaca, Mexico. William Bradley Roland was an Indymedia New York activist who was shot dead by paramilitaries whilst documenting the uprising in Oaxaca city [ Brad Will's last video]
Even though the protest was small, the message was still there, that Brad Will and all the other victims of repression during the Oaxaca uprising are not forgotten, and that justice is still due. This year's protest at the Mexican embassy passed peacefully, contary to the scenes of police violence that greeted protesters in 2006.Read more >>
The Serious Organised Crime Agency, an FBI-like agency to tackle "serious organised crime", are now being asked by Gordon Brown to expand their powers of limiting the right to free speech and free protest around the Houses of Parliament, even though one of the first things Gordon Brown said in his premiership, was that he was about to scrap it!
SOCPA contravenes our basic rights of Free Speech and the right to Protest, as Alison Hannah of the Legal Action Group states, "The distinction between ‘arrestable’ and ‘serious arrestable’ offences has been abolished, and the power of arrest now applies to all offences, however minor."Read more >>
On 8th October, the day that the British Parliament resumed after its Summer recess, a thousands of anti-war protesters marched into Parliament Square. They were joined by people who demanded the basic freedom to be able to protest peacefully without prior police permission or conditions.
In the past demonstrators in London have been arrested, charged and fined or imprisoned simply for reading out a list of names or for carrying an innocuous banner, under the draconian SOCPA legislation brought in by Prime Minister Blair's government and carried on by his successor Brown. Since a raid on protesters' legitimate encampment in the Square by Mayor Livingstone's Greater London Authority (GLA) team on 17th August, a surrounding metal barrier has been erected which severely inhibits the ability to demonstrate there.
Timeline: [ 14.55 | 15.40 | 16.15 | 16.30 | 17.15 ]
Video: [ 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 ]
Pictures: [ 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 ]
Texts: [ Monopoly on Protest: Open Letter to CND and the Stop the War Coalition | What's wrong with Stop the War Campaign? | SOCPA - STWC 'ban' was bollocks ]
2007 is witnessing a resurgence of No Border Camps around the world as three Camps have been announced. The first one took place in Ukraine in mid August [Pics] and another one is announced at the US/Mexico border for November. But close to home, this week the UK sees the first No Border camp near Gatwick airport. Despite weeks of constant harassment of local farmers by the police, the Camp got under way as planned with several hundred people attending workshops and discussions, and taking part in actions and demonstrations throughout the week.
The No Border Camp sought "to try and stop the building of the new detention centre, and to gather ideas for how to build up the fight against the system of migration controls". The Camp progaramme consisted of four days of workshops, protests and discussions. Various actions were announced for the week, including a Transnational Demonstration on Saturday 22nd from Crawley to the site of Brook House attended by around 500 people. Brook House is planned to be Britain's largest detention centre for migrant people, and it is being build next door to Tinsley House. Another solidarity march took place in Newcastle. There were several actions also happening during the camp on Thursday and Friday. These included the occupation of Virgin Atlantic tour operator offices and a blockade outside Group 4 near Crawley, a welcoming event in Crawley as well as demonstrations outside Lunar and Electric houses reporting centres in Croydon.
Saturday 22nd: Timeline of Events | Reports: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | Pics: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | Video | Press Releases: 1 | 2
Friday 21st: Timeline of Events | Reports: 1 | 2 | Pics 1 | 2 | Video | Press Releases: 1 | 2 | 3
Thursday 20th: Reports: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | Pics | Video
Wednesday 19th:: report | report and pics | pics
The week of actions against the DSEI arms fair continued on Thursday night. The most powerful weapons buyers and sellers gathered at the Dorchester Hotel in London's Park Lane for a luxury dinner with arms deals on the side. The DSEi/DMA dinner is an important part of the DSEi week, both for networking within the arms industry and as an opportunity to make agreements for weapons sales, perhaps over a glass of blood-red wine.
A protest outside the hotel was called, and a Bikes Not Bombs Critical Mass gathered at the South Bank to move towards Park Lane. Earlier in the day the Princess of Wales fountain was dyed blood red to remember victims of cluster bombs, whilst police activity continued in Rampart Street where several people were searched and one arrested in relation to the DSEi protests.
Timeline Of Events: See full TickerRead more >>
The security cordon around DSEi, the "fastest-growing defence show in the world." was breached shortly after 7.30am this morning, when a group of about 20 activists ran into the car park of the ExCeL Centre in London's docklands, where the exhibition opened today. A solidarity blockade of BAE took place in Manchester. About 80 people joined a CAAT march and rally, and about 50 cyclists arrived at Custom House DLR station from a critical mass style ride that left Bank tube station mid-morning. Space Hijackers managed to get a tank and sound system to the main entrance of ExCeL, after diverting the police with a decoy tank. They auctioned off the tank and invited the 200 strong crowd to a party against the arms fair so to let the fair's delegates know what they think about their murderous business.
Timeline Of Events: See full Ticker
Outline of Day Events:
17:30: Protestors have been shouting slogans and jeering arms fair delegates as they leave via Canning Town DLR station. One banner reads "Stop Dealing in Death". The area is still full of police who continue to stop and search small groups of protestors, but most delegates have now left.
17:00: Critical Mass has moved off towards Canning Town. Tank has left the West Entrance.
16:30: Many police reported to be at Canning Town station which is used by the delegates to leave the arms fair
16:00: The tank was sold for $50 [.wav audio report]. The party continues.
15:45: Critical Mass has arrived at the West Gate, where police are placing barriers around the tank and protestors. The auction of the tank starts at 16:00 [.wav audio report]
15:10 The second tank has now been driven off the low loader and has approached the West gate of DSEi where it has parked blocking the mini roundabout entrance [.wav audio report]. The turret is facing the arms fair, music is blasting out and a 'For Sale' sign has been hung on the side. [Aduio reports: 1 | 2]
14:25 Another rogue tank has been spotted on a low loader lorry heading towards DSEi. Protestors are now following behind it. The Space Hijackers tank in Lochnagar Street in undergoing a lengthy police inspection. [.wav audio report]
14:10 After negotiating a planned route with the police the Space Hijackers Tank finally moved off, but has now been stopped after advancing only around 10 yards. A police officer has just said that they intend to carry out a vehicle check on the tank and may also search the 9 or so occupants of the tank - he estimated this could take up to an hour. [.wav audio report]
14:00 Around 80 people are protesting outside Custom House DLR (Docklands Light Railway) station next to DSEi. They were joined by some of the cyclists who were on an earlier critical mass type demonstration. There are reports of police searching people coming off the DLR.
A second round of Indymedia Oaxaca infonite in the UK is starting, focussing on the experiences and struggless the people of Oaxaca's rebellion. The tour will begin in Cardiff at the PAD social centre on the 9th where it will also visit people who are fighting the Brecon Beacons gas pipeline. In London it will take part in the Disarm DSEi mobilisations, as well as a planned infonite at the LARC on the 12th. Then it will visit Nottingham on Friday the 14th at the Sumac Centre to continue to Liverpool on the 16th to join in the celebration of the new social centre Next To Nowhere, the Common Ground Community Garden in Reading on the 18th, and it will end at the No Border Camp in Gatwick on the 21st.
There will be talks and discussions with our compañero from Indymedia Oaxaca as well as the presentation of 'True To My Pledge', a video made by MALDEOJOTV to rise funds in support of the women made widows in Oaxaca due to state repression. Click at the Full article link for background information, and see IMC-UK Oaxaca topic page for reports on the Oaxaca Uprising.Read more >>
The Climate Camp's second Day of Action has seen a flurry of direct actions throughout England despite the widespread abuse of Stop and Search powers that Climate campers were subjected to over the duration of the camp. Whilst the 24h blockade of BAA headquarters in Heathrow continued overnight and into the afternoon, a series of protests have taken place in different parts of the country. The day started with a blockade of the Sizewell nuclear power station in Suffolk where a group of five people locked on in the entrance of Sizewell nuclear power station and unfurled a banner reading 'nuclear power is not the answer to climate chaos' and a solidarity protest in Newcastle. At the same time a group of activists super-glued themselves to various entrances of the BP head offices in St James Sq in central London. An hour later a group of people occupied the offices of a carbon offset company called 'Climate Care' in Oxford, whilst work was disrupted at the London offices of Bridge Point Capital, the owners of Leeds airport. Another action took place at the fountains of London's Trafalgar Square. Another solidarity protest has taken place in Newcastle city centre. Finally, a battalion of ten clowns marked out the site of a 4th runway in the garden of Lord Soley, chairman of the Heathrow Forward campaign.
Press releases: Carbon Offset Companies targeted by Climate Camp Activists and the camp's press release summarising 24 hours of action
Update Tuesday 21st: A group of around 30 people from the Climate Camp made their way to Harmondsworth Immigration Detention Centre at midday on Tuesday, only to be forcibly penned by police into a car park invisible to the road [Report]. The action was to highlight the link between detention centres and climate change, and to show solidarity to those inside, detained for committing no crime. In the evening Climate Camp activists targeted Stansted Airport. Leaflets were handed out and a slogan attached to a wall on a main entrance/exit. Hear a podcast containing a couple of interviews, general mood in BAA, Seize the Day gig and Rob Newman performance at the camp.Camp For Climate Action website | workshops | bust card | directions 1, 2
Midday Sunday saw the start of Climate Camp's 24 hours of mass action.
12.30am The blockade of the World Cargo depot ends, protesters have been cut out and have called in from police stations.
10.45pm The seven-strong support team from the World Cargo depot blockade have been made to leave and are on their way back to site. Those locked on have been arrested but it's not clear at this time if they have yet been removed.
9.10pm The BA World Cargo terminal shed is being blockaded by 8 people in lock on tubes forming a circle [press release|photos]. They have seven people present in support. Meanwhile Bicycology have delivered food to the 250+ people sheltering under tarps outside BAA. There is music and a party atmosphere despite the rain [later reports|audio].
8.15pm Bicycology has just left the camp with trailers full of food, cake and treats for those planning on camping at BAA tonight. More tham 200 people are currently at the BAA offices planning to stay overnight.
8.00pm The police cordons around both groups of protesters at BAA HQ have now dispersed. Some people are now returning to camp whilst others are trying to join the larger block to camp overnight.
7.30pm About one hour ago people dropped a banner reading 'Plane Suicide' on Colnbrook Bypass motorway bridge over the M25. The banner overlooks the traffic going northbound, some of which will exit off towards the aiport.
7.20pm The smaller group penned in at BAA is negotiating to be moved with the bigger group on the other side of the building. People are preparing to stay for the night at BAA - cooking equipment is being sorted and a cooking rota is being organised.
6.20pm Kids blockade arrives at BAA with bicycle soundsystem and placed in kettle. Meanwhile some some people are returning in dribs and drabs to camp. People are free to come and go as usual via the Sipson Lane gate. All others are blocked. Legal team are confirming 5 arrests so far and more reports of injuries are coming in.
5.00pm Riot police are blocking the footpath exit, southeast of the camp. They are not letting people out but they are letting people in. A line of people has been formed in front of them with their hands up on the air.
4.00pm A man superglued himself to a security vehicle at the Heathrow business academy. He was unstuck and arrested. Meanwhile the majority of the kids block are heading towards the BAA offices along the A4 with others returning to the camp. The atmosphere is good, the march looks really colorful and people are singing.
3.30pm Around 250 people are being confined by police behind the BAA offices. The building itself is now protected by a ring of police. Small groups of people keep coming to the area of BAA building. In the BAA carpark another small group are "praying" with the BAA monks! Another 200-300 people from the Kids block are headed towards the BAA offices.
3.15pm Around 100 protesters have reached BAA and are holding a banner reading 'Social Change Not Lifestyle Change'. Lots of mainstream media are present.
3.00pm 200-300 people left the camp from the south side and fanned out into smaller groups. TSG, police in riot gear and mounted police are there trying to kettle the crowds in the fields. One protester has reportedly been injured by a police horse. Police have broken down a fence to enable mounted police to enter and are being aggressive. 100 people were penned in but have since returned to the camp, others made it further towards BAA [full pic report].
1.00pm 3 teenage girls are on the roof of the Heathrow Business Academy, very close to BAA headquaters. They have unrolled a banner that reads Make Planes History
12.00 noon At least three large groups of several hundred people each have marched out of the camp from both exits towards the various targets of their actions. Children, parents and supporters are on one family-friendly march, one group is marking out the proposed third runway, while another has left from the south end of the camp and fanned out into smaller groups to foil police efforts to keep them in.
Also on the newswire: Video 1 2 3 4 5 6 | Photos: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 | Reports: 1 | Audio Podcast | Press Releases: Press release from Climate Camp Media: Police attack protesters | Activists Deny Smear by General Manager of Carmel Agrexco | Brandishing shields, hurling missiles? - anarchists at BAA.
For up-to-the-minute climate camp reports and breaking news, check the Indymedia UK News Ticker. You can also get it as SMS alerts or listen to it by phoning the Blasted Campers info line on 0207 043 3783.Daily round-ups are on the UK Indymedia Climate Camp page.
At 7am two independent groups of campaigners from the Camp for Climate Action stopped carbon-intensive private jets fom operating at two airports in the south east. Executive flights at Biggin Hill and Farnborough airports have been brought to a standstill by climate activists concerned at the huge growth in the use of private jets by business people. At Biggin Hill Airport the activists D-locked themselves to the gates of the airports. 10 people were then arrested. The blockade lasted for just under 4 hours.
24 people took part in the blockade at Farnborough Airport with 9 people locked onto lock-on devices across the access road. After an hour the aiport staff opened up an emergancy crash exit to allow the gathered business people in. Meanwhile protesters handed out leaflets to staff, passengers and locals. Jets were delayed and after 2 hours a second emergency exit was opened. By this point the police warned people they would be arrested and it was decided to return to the camp. Although no one was arrested, the police did seize lock-on devices.
Also on the newswire: Pics of Biggin Hill blockade | Business flights blockaded by climate activists | Video Interview with Farnborough Airport Blockaders | Bristol Airport Stunt | Audio Interviews from Camp | Renewable energy at Camp - photos report and videos | Camp under Surveillance | Happy Days Thursday Pics and ReportRead more >>
"Teams of 12 specially trained officers will form a Forward Intelligence Team (FIT) who, operating in uniform, will seek to build a "rapport" with "street activists" so that people "likely to provoke disorder can be identified early in an event"
The FIT first surfaced in the early 1990s, as part of the Public Order Intelligence Unit (CO11), a section of the Public Order Branch of the Metropolitan Police. They were initially targeted at football fans but were soon extended to cover a wide variety of political events, and their tactics have more recently been used in town centres as part of the "community policing" strategy. Sometimes they are deployed outside of the Metropolitan area, as at the G8 in Scotland for example, and most UK police forces now have officers trained in their methods.
IMC Links: FIT hunting NoBorders activists at rampART | Protest at Heckler & Koch weapons manufacturers HQ in Nottingham. | Policing FIT for "serious and sustained" terror? | FIT watch at Disarm DSEi meeting. | Counter-FIT: some thoughts. | Resisting the FIT teams: a proposal for action. | FIT at Convergence Centre. | Fit Team vs the Grey Bloc. | Backwards Intelligence Team. | Fatuous Intimidation Team strike again! | FIT intimidation at rampART. | The FIT team at work. | Police Harassment Bayswater Rd. | Indymedia and British Intelligence Services. | Where are the London cops? | Mayday march and protest at Canary Wharf. | Mayday in London 2007. | Unprecedented police harassment operation against Wombles. | G8 Employment Ministers Protest In London. |
Other links: Defective Inspectors. | WANTED! | Europol. | The Empire Strikes Back. | Fairford Coaches judgement. | Anarchist Mayday Cricket. | Laboratory of Insurrectionary Imagination. | Defend the Intifada. | What really happened in London. | The police paparazzi. | Public order training and tactics reviewed. | We are heartbroken and furious! | G8 Employment Ministers Protest In London. | Bank Robbed! | All about my 'BIG BROTHER' ...! | NETCU Watch. | FIT Watch. |Read more >>
Few informed people doubt the link between carbon emissions and global warming. Even Blair, commenting on "the world's greatest environmental challenge", admitted our effect on the environment to be "large and growing". And since the fastest growing contributor to that effect is air travel, it seems beyond belief that the government would be pressing to expand airports.
Chief amongst these is Heathrow, where a history of lies and broken promises continues as BAA, in league with the state, tries to force through a third runway and a sixth terminal. But it's ceased to be an easy ride. Public appreciation of climate change is awarding legitimacy to direct action groups and the battle over Heathrow's third runway looks set to be one to remember.
Related: Heathrow's Third Runway challenged by villagers | Air expansion fatcats shamed by Tower Bridge protest | Time for BAA to fasten its seatbelts | Heathrow Residents Take Direct Action with Plane Stupid | West London residents halt traffic outside DfT HeadquartersRead more >>
This years London Gay Pride saw one of the biggest turnouts ever despite two factors that would have all but destroyed other events. Firstly unknown persons planted two 'devices’ on the route of the march two days before. This could have led the Police to cancel the procession or a least reroute it through a less glamorous part of town. Then there was the rain that tipped down by the bucket full from beginning to end and the pathetic little protests by the National Front and their brethren from the Christian Right. Fortunately the LGBT community and their supporters are not so easily put off and beer and broll'ies were the order of the day, with the pink pound ensuring plenty of both flowed through the damp streets of London.
However, marchers carrying banners with the word 'queer' displayed on them were forbidden from displaying them at yesterday's Gay Pride event in London. Blundering cops decided that the word was 'offensive', and someone wearing a t-shirt which read 'anarchists make better lovers' was also ordered to cover it up as this was also deemed 'offensive' by those arbiters of good taste the London Met. Politics is not allowed at Pride it seems, leaving more room for corporate back-slapping about how right on companies like Lloyds Bank and British Airways are.
Pride 2007 Reports Elsewhere: Dublin Gay Pride 2007 | Gay Pride in Riga, Latvia 2007 | Chicago's Biggest Pride Parade Ever! Gives Warm Welcome to Progressive Contingent | 2007 Pride Weekend in San Francisco | Israel - we are all queersRead more >>
Gordon Brown is facing an anti-war welcome during his first week in power, with little sign that he will break with Blair's disastrous foreign policy. A War Is Still the Issue camp was set up in Parliament Square from Saturday 23rd [ 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Video ] (the fact that it was allowed may be a sign that SOCPA will be repealed? ... well, in fact probably not!). There was a demonstration outside Brown's Labour leadership coronation in Manchester on Saturday [ 1 | 2 | 3 ] and a Military Families Against War demonstration took place on his first day as Prime Minister on Wednesday [ Pics ] Later in the evening, a small group of activists braved the rain outside Blair's new Connaught Square home and made neighbours aware of their new resident [ Pics ].Read more >>
2007 is witnessing a resurgence of No Border Camps, which were instrumental to the No Border movement from the late 1990's onwards. Three No Border camps for 2007 have recently been announced. The first will be in the Ukraine at the intersection of five countries and at the border of Fortress Europe. In September, it is the turn of our very own Gatwick airport, where the government is planning to build yet another prison for migrants. Finally, in November, there will be another No Border camp at the Mexico/US border, where every year hundreds of migrants die trying to cross the desert or at the hands of the vigilante 'border police', the Minutemen.Read more >>
Over 20,000 demonstrators showed their support for the Palestinians living under Israeli occupation in a march and rally held in London on 9 June, 2007, to mark the 40th anniversary of the Six-Day War and the ongoing military occupation of the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem. The rally, which took place in Trafalgar Square, was organised by Enough!, a coalition of over 50 charities, trade unions, faith and other campaign groups.
All around the world, thousands marked the anniversary with a week of actions against the Israeli occupation (see this round-up). In Germany, G8 protesters responded with a mass demo at a Caterpillar plant in Rostock [Video]. An unconfirmed report claimed that the plant was fire-bombed that night, destroying Caterpillar machinery.
Related: This Week In Palestine – Week 23 2007 | Taking Aim: The Destruction of Palestine | Co-op Radio: Palestine - 40 years of occupation | The Six Day War Deceptions | Israel's Attack on the USS Liberty Revisited | John Pilger: Resisting the EmpireRead more >>
At least 12 activists have now been charged under SOCPA in connection with the No More Fallujahs Peace Camp and Naming the Dead actions in Parliament Square and Whitehall on 29-30 October 2006. Reports from the actions here.
In a planned act of civil disobedience against the occupation of Iraq, campaigners set up an unauthorised camp in Parliament Square for 24 hours last October. In all, over 100 people took part in workshops and discussions and held 'Naming the Dead' remembrance ceremonies in Parliament Square and Whitehall during the action.
Most of the defendants have been in court over the past two weeks, with the judgements to date illustrating the arbitrary nature of British "justice".
Read on...Read more >>
Critical Mass (CM) is a monthly event mainly consisting of cyclists but other forms of human propulsion are welcomed. The first one happened in San Francisco USA on Friday, September 25, 1992 and since then enthusiasts in many towns and cities worldwide have followed suit. Sometimes events calling themselves 'Critical Mass' accompany public demonstrations but purists argue they are not related to the regular monthly ride. It is difficult to describe CM as opinions differ widely but they seem to range from a simple celebration of cycling to an anti-authoritarian blockade of traffic, particularly cars, with many facets in between. Almost from the beginning there has been a mixed reaction from the police, ranging from helpful facilitation to aggressive confrontation.
In the last few years the police have become much more confrontational in the UK and they try to manipulate the rides. London now has large numbers of cycle police attending every Mass, except the one in December which is close to the New Year holiday when they don't turn up at all!. The Metropolitan Police issued a leaflet to participants in September 2005 claiming that the ride is not lawful. Their claim was rejected in the High Court in May 2006 but the police have since appealed and won.
Critical Massers have vowed that the ride will go on. The next London Critical mass is on Friday 25th May, meeting outside the NFT between 6 and 6.30pm and there has been a call-out to make this the biggest ride ever.
From the newswire: Abuse of police powers in Derby | London Critical Mass 30th September 2005 | London Critical Mass under threat | Critical Mass London: Letter from Green Party to Met. Police | London Critical Mass reports | Amazing turnout on "banned" critical mass | Massive Critical Mass Defies SOCPA Exclusion Zone | Southend's first Critical Mass stopped by police | 2nd Southend Critical Mass ends with 3 arrests | Leeds Critical Mass | York Critical Mass | Police charge cyclists at Glasgow Critical Mass | Birmingham's Ride reaches Critical Mass Videos: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 |Read more >>
Public sector cuts