Ramsgate: ‘Protesters and police in clash’

Posted on October 26, 2012

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Today (26th October), a news item was posted on thisiskent.co.uk titled ‘Protesters and police in clash’.

‘… PROTESTERS and police have clashed during “emotionally charged” rallies after live animal exports resumed at Ramsgate port.

On Friday, more than 100 campaigners turned out to register their disgust at the High Court decision to reverse Thanet council’s temporary ban on live animals being moved through its port …

Protesters slammed the police for a “heavy-handed” approach.

Mary Knott, an animal charity worker from Margate, said: “They were quite brutal – they just didn’t care.

“They really do use bully-boy tactics and everybody that gathered on Friday wasn’t a threat. If it wasn’t so tragic you could honestly make a comedy out of it.”

Pensioner Ellie Boehm, 66, from Ramsgate, went to Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother Hospital in Margate after the protest. She said a policeman fell on her, leaving her elbow badly bruised.

She called for the fight against live shipments to carry on, saying: “It’s ridiculous, it’s absolutely inhumane and we really feel it has got to stop.”

Reports suggest 30 police officers were deployed on Friday, and about 40 on Monday when another shipment left the port.

Police made one arrest last Friday and four more on Monday for public order offences.

Thanet councillor Ian Driver branded the use of police resources “outrageous”.

He said: “The majority down there are peaceful people who are not there to cause any danger to anyone or to destroy any property.

“The cost of that – of policing mainly female vegans – it makes you wonder.”

Kent Police defended their handling of the protests.

A spokesman said: “The role of Kent Police is to facilitate peaceful protest and to enable lawful trade to take place.

“Officers are drawn from across the county and how many are deployed will depend on the number of protestors and the nature of their protest.”

Thanet council suspended live exports, after 45 sheep had to be slaughtered in the port as they were too sick and crippled to travel on September 12.

Last Tuesday, three Dutch firms involved in the trade successfully challenged the decision at the High Court.

Animal movements through the port will now continue until a full judicial review has been completed.

Thanet South MP Laura Sandys has written to the Minister for Animal Welfare to seek a meeting and plans to submit a petition on the floor of the House of Commons calling for an immediate end to live exports in Ramsgate …’

Read the item, view images and be the first to add your comment online at www.thisiskent.co.uk/Protesters-police-clash/story-17187725-detail/story.html

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Posted in: News