Brian Haw Harrassed by Police

I suspect the small group of police who came to Parliament Square around 7pm on Friday thought that there would be few people around, and will have been a little surprised when they started arguing and arresting Brian Haw to find they were being photographed by two freelances and an AP staffer, as well as another freelance shooting video.

© 2009 Peter Marshall

The event appears to be a part of a long-standing campaign of harassment against the peace protester who has been in the square since 2 June 2001 – eight years and almost five months. Over the years police have made various legal and illegal attempts to remove him, and the government passed a law to try and do so – but messed up the drafting. So Brian is still there, still making his appeal to the conscience of the nation to stop the killing – particularly the killing of children – in Iraq and elsewhere.

© 2009 Peter Marshall.

I couldn’t understand the argument the officer was having with Brian, but each seemed to be accusing the other of not having acting lawfully. Eventually Brian was pushed and pulled along on his crutches, still protesting and lifted into the back of a waiting police van.

© 2009 Peter Marshall

I returned the following morning and he was still in police custody at Belgravia Police station, but about to be taken into court. Apparently his immediate release was then ordered. When I came back later in the afternoon he was back in his usual chair in the square.

© 2009 Peter Marshall

Although I was working very close to Brian and the police, I was careful not to get in the way, and had no problems, although things got a little hectic as he was actually put into the van, and I had several  unsharp frames as I was pushed by police and other photographers.

Almost all of the arrest images were shot at ISO 3200, f4.5, 1/60 and using flash. The flash can’t handle subjects very close to the camera and over-exposure of these was a problem in some frames.   Although I moved around the action as much as possibly, there is just too much similarity between the various shots I took, as you can see on My London Diary.

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