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Policewatch Films

Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Hands Off Gaza : Saturday 3rd Jan 12.30pm London Embankment

On Saturday the 3rd January there will be another demonstration in solidarity with the people of Gaza and to call (once again) for an end to Israeli attacks.

The horror being inflicted upon Gaza is such that the job of dealing with the FIT could be seen as almost trivial in comparison, and for that reason this call out is hard to write. But the Met are very good at using the intimidation and harassment of Forward Intelligence Teams to kill off protest. If we are going to be effective in giving solidarity to the people of Gaza, we also need to be effective at protecting our own ability to protest on the streets of London.

The police have already been busy ‘gathering intelligence’ on those protesting this week outside the Israeli embassy, and they will be busy again on Saturday. The data, like all of that collected by FIT, will end up on a database in New Scotland Yard. Without knowing it, people who have taken part in legitimate and justified political protest will find themselves labelled ‘extremists’.

Nobody wants to be distracted from an issue as urgent and important as that of Gaza, and no-one should be. But we also owe it to ourselves not to stand by and allow the Met to get away with their normal brand of intrusion, harassment and bully-boy tactics. So this is the Fitwatch call for the demonstration on Saturday. Come and support the people of Gaza, but also come prepared to deal with the cameras, cordons and harassment of the Forward Intelligence Teams. Their presence is no longer accepted.

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