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The exclusion zone around Westminster

Posted by James Hammerton @ 10:14 pm on 24 September, 2005.
Categories political liberties, democracy and the rule of law.
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This article looks at the impact of the recently imposed exclusion zone around Parliament, preventing spontaneous protests, with a group of protestors testing out just what constitutes a protest. According to the article:

Mark Barrett, a tour guide who has already been arrested under the new law, and others from various causes gather purely in support of free speech for, as he says: “It removes the essence of protest if you have to ask permission from the state.” Barrett has not yet been charged, but the police have forbidden him from going within one kilometre of Big Ben. So he can’t take a trip on the London Eye, let alone meet his MP in his Parliament. So far 17 people have been arrested for allegedly demonstrating outside Parliament without police permission, which carries a maximum prison sentence of almost a year.

Meanwhile, it seems the Commissioner, Sir Ian Blair, is keen to have a memento of a lovely Sunday, which was no doubt why his emissary, a police photographer, took pictures of all the picnickers.

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