Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Injured peace protestor to sue police

A retired nurse is planning legal action after she was injured by the police during an anti-war demonstration.

Maureen Stephenson, from Waltham Forest in east London, is still receiving treatment after being knocked to the ground during the protest in June, injuring her back and shoulder.

She has made a complaint against the Metropolitan Police.

The Stop the War Coalition said police were "out to attack" people taking part in the Parliament Square protest. The Met did not comment.

Mrs Stephenson is receiving treatment after sustaining injuries in the protest, timed to coincide with US president George Bush's farewell visit to London.

The Stop the War Coalition complained to the police about the way officers behaved and said it would support anyone facing legal action.

Member Chris Nineham said: "For some reason, the whole attitude of the police towards the peace movement changed on that day and they were out to attack us."

He added: "The level of brutality was in a different league to anything we had seen since the group was launched in 2001.

"There were police with riot sticks, which was just ridiculous given that we had held more than 20 previous protests with hardly any arrests at any of them."

In June Deputy Assistant Commissioner Chris Allison, predictably, defended the actions of his officers during the protest, claiming that the actions of the police were "entirely proportionate" in the face of "irresponsible" and "criminal" provocation by the peace protesters.

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