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Monday, 1 February 2010

FIT at Stop the War










An estimated 600 police were on duty last Friday to police the Stop the War protest outside the QEII conference centre where Blair was giving evidence to the Iraq war inquiry. They probably outnumbered the protesters.
The demonstration had been stopped from assembling on the green of the QEII centre as they'd planned, and was instead coralled, without resistance, into Storey's gate and other side roads. There the policing relaxed, and as the day wore on, the ring of police and protesters around the conference centre began to resemble a giant square dance, unlikely to erupt into anything more threatening than an impromptu do-si-do.

The FIT, on the other hand, were keen to keep up their usual brand of intimidation and harassment. Photographer Neal Williams (pictured), along with his FIT minder, hovered behind the lines of TSG, every few minutes firing his camera flashgun in the faces of those picked out as 'potential trouble-makers'.

And the Hammersmith and Fulham cop (FH70), pictured top left, entered enthusiastically into the spirit of things, ordering three stop and searches, and at least one arrest for breach of the peace. He was a little too keen, perhaps, to impress his friends in the public order unit.
Pictures: Sgt FH70; Public Order police from Scotland Yard's CO11, CO5090 and Chief Inspector; Neal Williams, FIT photographer.

3 comments:

A said...

Hey, I was there and I ran into Val from Fitwatch. I related to her the interesting story of events earlier in the day, and she asked me to post it up here.

I was with a small group (4ish) of anarchist protesters wearing masks. We quickly attracted the attention of two FIT including the old hand Ian Skivins. They followed us around for a bit, not filming but standing very close to us and watching us all the time.

After a while they must have noticed we'd twigged them, so they stopped following us and instead sent a couple of regular cops after us.

The two cops clearly didn't know what they wanted from us. They started by asking us to take of our masks "to check we weren't concealing anything". When this was pointed out to be stupid, they said it was to "check our identity". Again, we reacted against this and the cops quickly backpeddled, telling us they only wanted to know if we where wearing masks cos it was cold. After much bumbling and blustering the cops left unsuccessful, and despite claiming they hadn't been ordered to talk to us, they went straight back and reported to Skivins and Co. We were tailed for the rest of the day.

Really Fit said...

A, thanks for the comment - can you get in touch with us on defycops@yahoo.co.uk?

Anonymous said...

oh god, are we still taking pictures of coppers? some might think you have a thing for men in uniforms....As for A's story, sounds like the same old tale broughtout and given a dusting down. I think we should be more worried about the world economy or fraud online. Which is worth more than 3 times the illegal drugs trade!!! Dont hear gov's banging on about that do we?? wonder why.