Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Weapons Conference, Tank Blockaded: 20 Arrested

Weapons Conference, Tank Blockaded: 20 Arrested


More than 70 people took part in an action organised against the Weapons Defence Industry Association conference held at Te Papa on Tuesday. The action, which was organised by Peace Action Wellington, involved a large sit-in/blockade in front of Te Papa which lasted for about two and a half hours, and also a blockade in front of an armoured vehicle. Twenty people in all were arrested, from charges ranging from obstruction, trespass and assault of police officers.

The action began in Civic Square where the Aoteaora Revolutionary Clown Army (ARCA) and others gathered. They made their way along the waterfront and in to the Te Papa forecourt. The march bypassed the fencing designed to pen them in and went around the side. Police scrambled to intercept them and, in response, the march broke into a quick run towards the front entrance. Many protesters were tackled to the ground but enough got through to start the sit-in and, after a few scuffles, everyone was able to make it to the front. Chants of "No arms at our place", "Arms trade, Death trade!" and "War mongers, Out! Out! Out!" went up as protesters linked arms and blocked the front entrance.

The blockade was maintained for about two and a half hours. The clowns made persistent fun of both the conference attendees and the police (as well as the mayor!) by lining up with them, marching around behind them, as well as riding bikes and throwing water balloons. A certain "pro-capitalist" contingent holding placards such as "Fuck the 3rd world" and "Capitalism is wonderful" were attacked and dealt to in appropriate clown fashion. Hundreds of leaflets were also handed out to a receptive public.

As protesters were considering leaving after about two and a half hours, one protester was quite randomly grabbed from behind, arrested for trespass and dragged away to an awaiting paddy wagon. Protesters went head to head with the police and another was arrested for trespass, which resulted in the arrest of a third who was dragged into the scuffle. Another protester was badly injured, and later had to be treated for concussion, after police punched and knocked her to the concrete. A tense confrontation followed with the police before the clown army decided to break off and march away, keeping the focus on the conference.

Immediately after, the army attempted to get an armoured vehicle out from Te Papa and onto the road, to which protesters responded by laying down in front and linking up. The tank came to a halt, backed up and was locked in behind a gate and a police line. Police were far more brutal this time as protesters were picked off one by one. A police contingent marched to and fro from the paddy wagon to the blockade as they ripped individual protesters away, some receiving quite painful treatment, and were arrested. The original 17 people dwindled down to a hardy three, who refused to leave and were picked off finally, after about 30 minutes since the blockade began.

In all twenty were arrested, most discharged later with breach of the peace, but seven have had charges held against them including trespass, assault and obstruction.

MORE IMAGES:


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Labour Refusing To Lead A Progressive Drugs Policy

Once again, Labour has chosen not to use (a) its parliamentary majority and (b) the huge mandate it was given at the last election in order to (c) bring about progressive social change. Once again, Labour seems to regard its main purpose for being in power as being to keep National and Act out of power. Will Labour for instance, overhaul our out-dated, unsafe, and unjust laws on drugs? No, it will not... More>>

 

Climate Change: Emissions Report Shows Urgent Action Needed

Every part of Government will need to take urgent action to bring down emissions, the Minister for Climate Change, James Shaw said today in response to the recent rise in New Zealand’s greenhouse emissions. The latest annual inventory of New ... More>>

ALSO:

Government: The Duke Of Edinburgh

9 April 2021 Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today expressed New Zealand’s sorrow at the death of His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. “Our thoughts are with Her Majesty The Queen at this profoundly sad time. On behalf of the New ... More>>

ALSO:

Government: Delivers Next Phase Of Climate Action

The Government is delivering on a key election commitment to tackle climate change, by banning new low and medium temperature coal-fired boilers and partnering with the private sector to help it transition away from fossil fuels. This is the first ... More>>

Police: Police Accept Findings Of IPCA Report Into Photographs Taken At Checkpoint

Police accept the findings of a report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) relating to photographs taken at a checkpoint in Northland. On November 16, 2019, Police set up a checkpoint down the road from a fight night event in Ruakaka ... More>>

ALSO:

Health: Drug-Testing Law To Be Made Permanent

Interim legislation that is already proving to keep people safer from drugs will be made permanent, Health Minister Andrew Little says. More>>

World Travel: New Zealand Temporarily Suspending Travel From India - PM Jacinda Ardern

Travel into New Zealand from India - including for New Zealand citizens and residents - is being temporarily suspended because of high numbers of Covid-19 cases. More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels