Tuesday, August 05, 2008

UK police accused of heavy handedness in green protest

Despite ever growing evidence of the role of fossil fuels in global warming the British government has insisted on pushing ahead with plans to rebuild a coal burning power station at Kingsnorth, Kent. Environmental activist argue that the construction, which they claim is the first of six similar projects, will produce between six and eight million tons of carbon dioxide per year.

Green activists who have set up a camp in order to protest plans to refurbish the existing power plant have accused police of excessive violence in dealing with demonstratoers who have set up camp on the Hoo peninsular. In video footage aired on the BBC police were shown forcibly entering Climate Camp 2008 in order to remove "abandoned vehicles" according to one participating police officer inteviewed by the BBC.

Activists at the camp claim that the local authorities have been involved in a series of actions aimed at preventing or harassing peaceful protests. Actions which have included the confiscation by the police of items such as board games and crayons.

However, assistant chief constable of Kent police, Gary Beautridge, speaking to the Guardian newspaper said that his officers have recovered knives and makeshift weapons during searches near the camp and that their dicovery indicated that elements within the demonstration intended to break the law. Such accusations were quickly dismissed by protestor, Simon Evans arguing that the they were part of a "smear campaign" against the environmentalists protesting.

The protests are expected to continue for the rest of the week.

UK Police accused of heavy handedness in green protest


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