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Oil Summit activists remind Nash of right to protest

Oil Summit activists remind Nash of right to protest

Date 23rd March 2018

From: Oil Free Wellington

Organisers of the rally and blockade against next week’s Oil Summit at the TSB Arena Wellington are issuing an alert to the Minister of Police Stuart Nash regarding the right to legitimate protest.

Oil Free Wellington spokesperson James Barber says, “In 2015, police acted in a violent and arbitrary manner while policing a similarly controversial event at the TSB Arena - the venue for this year’s Petroleum Summit.

“The police arrested 26 people involved in non-violent direct action against the annual Weapons Expo. Every one of these people was subsequently acquitted at a trial, and the judge even awarded costs against the police for their action.”

“It was a clear case of the police working as political pawns. The police put the desire of corporate representatives to attend a business conference before safety and the right to protest. Ordinary people exercising their right to protest were assaulted, detained, and arrested.”

“The police spent in excess of $30,000 of taxpayers’ money, and used a week of court time to try to prosecute people who had done absolutely nothing wrong. They had dared only to stand up against injustice.”

“We expect a very different kind of response from the Police at the Rally for Climate Justice, and will be looking to the Minister for answers if that does not happen.”


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