Video: NZ Police Assault Woman Protester At TPPA Protest
Eyewitness accounts state: New Zealand Police were forced onto a defensive footing Saturday after protesters responded with anger at how Police pushed into the centre of their protest, pushing people over, elbowing them, first outside Sky City convention centre, and later near the Auckland Town Hall.
Video above courtesy of ActionNZMedia via Youtube.
Eyewitness Linda said: “About 3 minutes after protesters moved toward the door of the hotel, a police officer violently shoved a protester into the packed crowd, greatly provoking the protesters. This officer was then joined by security guards who started shoving the protesters and knocking them down. One protester can be seen with his hands up in the air, still being assaulted by a security guard.” For more see the comments section below.
At the later event Police singled out a young woman, one officer had allegedly punched her in the face knocking her down where she was semi unconscious for a time.
Images above and below: courtesy of @AAMCommons.
Protesters then reacted ending with the officer losing his footing. Other Police officers then formed a defensive ring around the woman and once she was able to walk they marched her out of the area.
Eyewitness @AAMCommons wrote on Twitter: “… this guy (pictured in helmet) took a perverse pleasure in his provocation.
“Security and cops came in with clear intent to provoke. Protesters were against window of Sky City… clearly couldn’t move any further. They obviously decided to move them out, protestors held the line…
“This guy (Police offer was) sent in with helmet, he started pushing hard out, protestors pushed back. When he eventually punched a young girl, the boys holding the line reacted. Another brawl ensued once the box’s were lit, not sure if that girl stomped head. Protest dispersed and a few stragglers headed… o Aotea Sq & ppl were heading home. Police came & brutally ambushed this girl,” @AAMCommons wrote.
Updated: Video & Report – New Zealand Police issued the following statement: “A crowd numbering around 150+ have tried to force entry to sky city but were blocked by a small number of police supported by Sky City personnel.
“Extra policing resources were sent to the City area to support our staff. The protestors started a fire in the middle of a nearby road. They tried to feed the fire with cardboard boxes.
“Police staff moved in to prevent escalation and two officers were separated, attacked and kicked numerous times. Fire appliances were called to the scene to help.
“The crowd moved off through CBD streets to Aotea Square. Two arrests were made. One of these arrests was a female that stomped on a constables head. The constable is currently at Auckland Hospital having his neck checked out.
“Police were extremely disappointed at the reckless actions of some of the protestors, their actions meant that normal police resources throughout Auckland were not available to attend normal calls for service.“There were a number of protestors that were genuine in their approach and not violent. The violent protestors that were part of their group put their colleagues in unecessary danger,” the Police statement said.
But Global Peace and Justice spokesperson John Minto said the policing of the TPP protest in Auckland on Saturday was provocative and plain stupid.
“As the protest gathering was preparing to leave Skycity the most senior police officer intervened to stop a symbolic act of burning a number of cardboard petition boxes.
“With tensions running high after the refusal of TPP organisers to accept the 750,000 international petition against the negotiations the police action added insult to injury.
“It was unnecessary, highly provocative and it was inevitable a scuffle would break out with several people injured.
“To make matters worse this same officer repeated the stupidity with the very provocative arrest of a young woman in Aotea Square a short time later.
“Another scrum was inevitable with further injuries.“Police diplomacy, restraint and awareness were absent today and resulted in at least 100 people lining up to abuse the 20 or so police as they left Aotea Square.
“Today’s policing was way up there among the most stupid and provocative we’ve seen in 35 years of being part of various protests.
“I’ve never seen one police officer cause so much unnecessary trouble for themselves as well as the protest group. The police in the protest deserved much better leadership today,” John Minto said.
Also Click Here For Video: Citizen-A TPP Special with Martyn Bomber Bradbury, Mike Dolan from Teamsters Union & Professor Jane Kelsey discuss the following issues:
Issue 1: Can Tim Groser negotiate in NZ’s interests when he’s applying for the top job at the WTO?
Issue 2: John Key says TPP will make us $3billion, wikileaks cables show the NZ negotiator complaining to the US that we get nothing out of the deal – who is right?
Issue 3: How does an unprecedented lock out from the conference of NGOs, unions and community groups impacted by the TPP bode for democracy issues?