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MP targeted by civil liberty protestors

NAOMI CANTON

14 November 2005 18:33

Scores of angry protestors met in Norwich at the weekend to demonstrate against the anti terrorism policies being proposed Home Secretary Charles Clarke.

The group of demonstrators stood outside Primark in the city centre on Saturday waving placards criticising the Norwich South MP for his proposed policies on ID cards and also for locking up terror suspects without trial.

They handed out leaflets and posters slamming the Norwich South MP for supporting the shoot to kill policy and his other controversial polices on asylum seekers. The protest against Mr Clarke was organised by the Norfolk and Norwich Human Rights Campaign, a collaboration of various anti-war and civil liberties groups in the area.

Last Week Mr Clarke suffered a major defeat in the House of Commons when Parliament rejected his proposals to allow the government to hold terrorism suspects for 90 days without charge.

Political activist Mel Harrison, one of the organisers, said the aim of the protest was to get Mr Clarke to listen to their concerns.

She said a series of events targeting Mr Clarke had been arranged throughout the month of November to coincide with civil liberties month.

She said they were calling an end to human rights violations and therefore wanted the troops to be brought back from Iraq and an end of torture or prisoners in Guantanamo Bay.

“It's about the Government but because Charles Clarke is here and he's our Home Secretary he should be listening to what we are saying.” She said they wanted an end to new laws “based on a pretext of counter-terrorism.”

“The Government is stealing our identities and we are being treated like criminals before we have even done anything. Having ID cards won't stop terrorism. Terrorists will just use fake ID cards.

“We are campaigning on the streets to give people the real information about what's happening. If you listen to the news it doesn't give people the truth about what's happening. So we are having a street presence this year so that people can make up their own minds. I don't want Charles Clarke to be voted in again.”

She said they had hoped to hand deliver an open letter to the Home Secretary but were not allowed to.

The letter calls for the repeal of various terrorism acts passed since 2001, a review of immigration law and for the British Government to “refuse to collaborate with nations that hold weapons of mass destruction including Israel and the USA.” It also asks for Mr Clarke to “prosecute officials who colluded in the illegal detention and torture of prisoners at Guantanamo” and to “refuse extradition or deportation of suspects to the USA and other countries where human rights and freedom from torture are not guaranteed.”

The demonstration coincided with a weekend of left-wing political song called Raise Your Banners organised by Norwich Anarchists and other groups.

Mr Clarke told the Evening News: “I do did not wish to comment on any of this.”

But in response to the allegation he refused to receive an open letter he said: “They organised a demonstration a couple of weeks ago and wanted to deliver an open letter or petition to me but they required to meet me at a certain time. I said to them that if they want to fix an appointment with me like my other constituents I would be more than happy to meet them.

“They have never requested an appointment to meet me. I am not prepared to get involved in gesture politics.”

Evening news

The slug himself will be hosting a public meeting on Friday 18th November at 7.00 at the Jubilee Community Centre, Long John Hill titled LISTENING TO YOU, because

'Working togethor I know that we can make Middle Lakenham an even better place to live.'

Posted By

Norwicher
Nov 14 2005 20:10

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Comments

rich
Nov 14 2005 20:19

There was an even crazier piece on RYB in the EDP on Friday...

stinkerbell
Nov 15 2005 13:28

Fucking hell....are the Evening News obsessed or what? "...Norwich Anarchists and other groups..." We only did the campaigns area!

I think they fancy us smile

rich
Nov 15 2005 14:56

They think we're gorgeous, they want to date us, they want to kiss us

stinkerbell
Nov 16 2005 15:32

They want to fuck us, right in our ears eek