Cop-enhagen climate summit disgrace

Police put climate activists in cages at Climate Summit as private companies and governments stall on saving life on earth.

Written by Rose Mouton
Photos by Kris Krag

 

"In an Ideal World there would either be no police or being a police officer would be a temporary rotating job that couldn't develop into a weapon of government¦ the police force is a danger to the people."

Milan Rai, "In an Ideal World" La Bouche Mag, Issue 2.

"The message from the authorities in Copenhagen was clear, there is no place for dissenting voices, however inept political attempts to save the world prove."

- Extract from Schnews article "Not a Hopenhagen"

Of course the police do what it says on the tin in many cases protect the public from crime but sadly, it is apparent (even through the corporate media) that, in many cases police are actually committing crime themselves. In 2009 we read about police on a tasering- frenzy in Nottingham and then there was the manslaughter at the G20 demo, oh and did you read about how they laughed at a lady who tried to report a rape recently? If this is what the mainstream press report about in our own back yard, who knows what goes ignored. As our columnist Sta*r buks reported in issue 3 the Independent Police Complaints Authority Commission (IPCC) recorded a 30% increase in sexual assaults last year. Our safety being put under threat by those funded by the state to protect us is clearly unacceptable, and is by no means only applicable to the UK. However, perhaps one of the most negative and harmful-to-mankind roles the plods have taken on to mankind is that of the Globalisation's Army, quashing any one who speaks out against the grave consequences of this system, such as climate change.

This global phenomenon was highly evident at the Copenhagen Climate change summit, Dec 7th - 18th '2009 where leaders and corporations did not do anything constructive to saving OUR planet, and climate activists who rocked up in Denmark were greeted by stop-n-searches, mass arrests and some were actually dragged into human cages (!!). New legislation passed by the supposedly liberal Danish government allowed for 'preventative' arrests of anyone. Among those joining these protestors were highly reputable clued up environmental organisations such as Friends of the Earth who were denied the right to even take part in these crucial discussions, a move which the NGO's director Andy Atkins claimed was an 'affront to democracy'. Whist organisations like FOTE queued up to be allowed in and had to wait outside, companies like Pepsi were allowed to swan into the conference to have their say on whether or not we would let global warming continue. "The fact that I flew here to sit on a panel for one and a half hours, then I'm flying straight back to the US, is an example of our commitment to environmental sustainability,' chirped Indra Nooyi, CEO of PepsiCo, totally unaware of the irony of her statement.  Yes really! And she wasn't alone, all those present in the summit shamelessly jetted in whilst a huge number of protestors including delegates, journalists, and civil society representatives and citizens m ade their way there by boat, bike, foot and even aboard a special protest train from Belgium. 


Once inside the convention centre, surprise surprise this bunch produced no binding commitment to bailing out life on earth, ignoring pleas from islands like the Maldives, which would disappear if water levels continues to rise. This is beyond absurd when contrasted to the speedy and decisive approach to the bank bailout. How preposterous this was. How tragic and disgraceful that it has all really come to this. Readers, can you honestly blame people for feeling compelled to pitch up in Copenhagen and express their despair? Well, the cops could it seems.

randomly arresting completely peaceful protestor

In one instance, police randomly decided to stop a peaceful precession of around 1,000 activists in the street, sealing off the roads with vehicles. They then charged the crowd with batons drawn before forcing protesters to sit in rows, hands cuffed behind their backs with cable ties. Some were there for hours sat in the road in Arctic temperatures (see right photo).  Others were taken to a pre-prepared detention facility in the suburbs of the city in huge orange buses. Here the police had built wire cages, a human containment facility, where ten to fifteen people were put in each one.  In cases where angry activists kicked off inside the cages, some pulling benches off the walls, police fought back with pepper spray and batons. Cops continued to use pepper spray, batons and arrest anyone they wanted throughout the entire week, taking whole groups to Guantanamo- style conditions.  It was terrifying how extreme and calculated these measures were for those exercising their right to protest over such a serious threat to our existence as a species and begs the question, is democracy well  and truly dead?


Long lines of arrested people on a peaceful procession forced to sit in Arctic conditions

 

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