Angry Climate Protestor Slams Victoria Police For Using Capsicum Spray
Incredible scenes have erupted in Melbourne over the last two days as protestors have clashed with police outside the International Mining and Resources Conference.
Dozens of people have been arrested and police say at least four officers were injured and two police horses were allegedly attacked. One of the protestors was also hospitalised with leg injuries.
Horrifying footage has revealed officers using capsicum spray, tackling protestors to the ground and using batons on demonstrators.
One of the people who copped a faceful of spray and claims she was hit with a baton for not complying with police orders. She says she has never seen that type of behaviour before.
Emma Black told Sunrise: "I put both hands up which is a universal signal of submission and as I was trying to move away and comply I was grabbed and struck by a police officer repeatedly.
"If multi-national mining corporations hadn't slaughtered thousands of people, displaced indigenous communities and destroyed the climate then maybe protesters wouldn't have had to scale poles and police wouldn't have moved in and sprayed us."
Victoria Police have defended their tactics over the last two days, saying it was necessary to contain the demonstration.
A police statement read: "Whilst we respect the rights of people to peacefully protest, the unlawful action undertaken today is a drain on police resources from across greater Melbourne."
The head of the state's police association went a step further and claimed the acts of the protestors were disgusting.
The Police Association Victoria Chief Executive Wayne Gatt told Sunrise: "Our members can't be paid enough to have to put up with the abuse and rubbish we saw yesterday from these protesters.
A disgusting display of police force this morning as people peacefully protest #IMARC.
Victoria is clearly joining the rest of Australia in a crackdown on the right to protest + our democracy. The Victorian Labor Government is protecting corporations rather than our communities. pic.twitter.com/6KfzRxi88X
- Victorian Greens (@VictorianGreens) October 28, 2019
"If they want to make a point, that's fine, but targeting police and innocent Australians just shouldn't happen.
"We had a member with a dislocated shoulder, two members with minor injuries, more members with scratches, bruises and lacerations as result of these tussles.
"All I saw yesterday in the footage I watched were innocent Australians being dragged to the ground, spat on, abused and taunted by people seemingly without a cause.
"If people want a public protest, police are more than happy to facilitate that. We shouldn't expect our police to facilitate violent or unruly protest behaviour at all."
Featured Image Credit: Sunrise