A peaceful demonstration is planned to assert our right to freely protest without fear. It will be held at 12pm on the 18th of May at Parliament Square, as a response to the campaign of harassment and intimidation which Lothian and Borders Police is directing at peaceful protesters in Edinburgh. Such repression violates human rights and, if it continues, it will stifle popular participation in civil society. The demonstration is also in solidarity with the dozens of working class people who are oppressed by the Edinburgh 'justice' system every day.
Police Harrasment in Edinburgh
On 15th April five people in the political performance art group, Edinburgh Rebel Clowns, were surrounded by police at a demonstration against the use of biofuels  and detained for questioning; they were investigating numerous protests that they claimed had happened in Edinburgh over the previous months. They were later charged with a 'breach of the peace' for behaving like clowns at the biofuels demonstration, despite eye witnesses reporting that they were friendly and entertaining.
While they were in custody, one woman was singled out, interviewed for two hours and kept in solitary confinement. When she was returned to the cell with her friends, she started vomiting From stress.
Sophie Bastable, 20, an Edinburgh University student and member of the rebel clown group said "We were targeted for no apparent reason other than dressing up as clowns and having political opinions. We had no idea that participating in a peaceful demonstration against biofuels could result in arbritrary arrest, and were shocked when we were detained without warning by lothian and borders police."
Today, the 12th May, Peter Wyszomirfki a 27 year old artist and Edinburgh resident was physically assaulted, and went to the police to report it: "After giving my statement another officer came into the room, he was very intimidating and accusatory saying: I know you, you were at the protest at the Quartermile . He showed me photographs and asked me loads of questions about people and events that I knew nothing about. He also said that the clowns are dangerous people, and that I shouldn't join them".
There have also been several early morning detentions of environmental campaigners. On Friday march 28th, three individuals were detained for questioning at the same time; they were woken up, and taken from their bedrooms with only just enough time to get dressed, then held and questioned for four and a half hours.
Oliver Munnion, 23, an Environmental Science student at Edinburgh University said "it's important to remind the police that they are public servants, and accountable for their actions. Their tactics of intimidation are reminiscent of more oppressive regimes."
Several environmental campaigners have been contacted by the police and offered money in exchange for information about past and future demonstrations in Edinburgh.
Not only are the Police acting in a way which contradicts their obligations to Article 10, and Article 11 of the European Convention of Human Rights; they are suppressing political protest, and if such activities continue, there will be detrimental consequences for popular participation in civil society.
In light of this we have the following demands:
We demand that the Lothian and Borders Police end the intimidation of peaceful protests.
We demand that harassment in the guise of 'evidence gathering' is stopped.
We demand that our human right to freedom of expression, freedom of assembly and association be respected.
We demand that people in police custody are treated with respect and dignity
We make these demands in solidarity with millions of people around the world whose rights are infringed upon by unjust governments and oppressive police forces; and in solidarity with the dozens of working class people every day who are subjected to the violence of Edinburgh's 'justice' system, people who are treated without dignity or respect by the police or the court.
We call upon every freedom loving person to come out and demonstrate at 12pm on the 18th of May at Parliament Square , to assert our freedom to protest, and to ensure that these rights are not eroded by aggressive policing.
 a fuel source which is contributing to famine and environmental devastation in the developing world
 A peaceful protest, raising awareness about the problems that supermarkets such as Sainsbury's have on the local economy and on the environment.
 Parliament square is located just off Edinburgh's royal mile, near High St, and the City Chambers.
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