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Peace activists condemn plan to make NSW a police state

Stop Bush Coalition – Media Release
The Stop Bush Coalition today condemned the move to make NSW a police state during APEC summit. It is also calling on the NSW Police Minister David Campbell to explain why more than 3000 security personnel, including NZ police, were needed to “protect” officials from protestors.

“A range of organisations and individuals are involved in organising a non-violent protest on September 7 when George Bush, John Howard and other APEC leaders attend the summit in Sydney”, spokesperson Alex
Bainbridge said. “Until now, the NSW government has been talking up a supposed ‘terrorist’ threat. But now we hear that the extra security is being deployed against us. This is an outrage.”

“From past experience, we know protestors have not always been allowed to protest peacefully. It was the police who attacked a peaceful protest when Dick Cheney visited Sydney earlier this year, and a veteran peace activist had to be taken to hospital as a result. Two young women were grabbed and arrested for standing around dressed up in what was obviously a fake police uniform, complete with made-up side burns,” said Bainbridge

“The barrage of media reports on the need for more police powers to ‘protect’ world leaders in Sydney is designed to create a security threat when there is none”, Bainbridge said. “It is also designed to justify the NSW state government’s move to increase police powers more generally with new legislation about to come before the NSW parliament.”

The Stop Bush Coalition is also concerned about any laws that will allow the NSW police to: carry taser guns; to jam telecommunications; to refuse or introduce a presumption against bail for protestors; to have additional stop, search and question powers; to “lock down” large sections of the Sydney CBD; and/or to lock up “designated people” for
the duration of the APEC summit.

“We also call on the NSW government not to allow US or other security forces to carry weapons and live ammunition on our streets”, said Anna Samson, also from the Stop Bush Coalition.

“We believe these laws to be unnecessary and urge the NSW government not to introduce them,” said Sampson.

“We intend to organise a non-violent protest on September 8 as the most effective way of getting our pro-people and anti-war message across to these world leaders,” said Sampson.

“We request that the NSW government publicly affirms its commitment to supporting a real democratic right of all to public protest – free from police intimidation – and that the NSW police and state government authorities facilitate our right to organise and participate in such a protest”, Samson concluded.

Alex Banbridge: 0413 976 638
Anna Samson: 0401 900 690

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skywalker | June 07, 2007

Come along, become apart of Sydney's Stop Bush Campaign. It is for anyone who wants to say No to Bush - No to endless wars and threats of blockades invasions and nuclear bombs, No to US Bases in Australia, No to unequal trade deals with USA. Now why do you want to make Bush feel unwelcome in early September, come along and let us know!

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