Police violence at G20 summit in Pittsburgh

This video from the USA is called G20 Pittsburgh Protests. Innocent Bystanders Attacked with Batons, Rubber Bullets, Tear Gas.

By Joe Kishore in the USA:

Police attack protesters at G20 summit in Pittsburgh

26 September 2009

Police have carried out a brutal crackdown on demonstrators at the G20 summit meeting in Pittsburgh over the past two days. The virtual lockdown of the city and assault on protesters represents yet another ominous sign of expanding police-military tactics within the United States against individuals protesting government policy.

Over 80 protesters and University of Pittsburgh students have been arrested so far in systematic repression that has included the use of batons, sound cannons, rubber bullets and OC gas (similar to tear gas). In the run-up to the meeting Pittsburgh has been inundated by thousands of police and National Guard troops, while permits for many demonstrations have been denied.

See also here. And here. And here.

Now, tweeting has lead to the arrest of two men who authorities say were aiding law-breakers during the protests around Pittsburgh during last month’s G-20 summit of world leaders: here.

A review into the policing of protests in Britain which was commissioned following the G20 protests has criticised the “unfair, aggressive and inconsistent” actions of police: here.

3 thoughts on “Police violence at G20 summit in Pittsburgh

  1. Day 5-Sept. 24

    The following special report was written by Dante Strobino from Raleigh Fight Imperialism, Stand Together (FIST) youth group who attending this protest:

    Over a thousand people gathered in Arsenal Park in Pittsburgh to resist the G-20 countries meeting in the David L. Lawrence Convention Center downtown. Young activists representing struggles against racism, gentrification, imperialist wars, gender oppression and environmental destruction gathered together in an effort coordinated by the Pittsburgh G-20 Resistance Project. Protesters began their march through a working class neighborhood of Lawrenceville towards a bridge to get into downtown. The march continued down Liberty Avenue in an unpermitted demonstration taking over the streets with banners that read “No Hope in Capitalism”, “No Bailout, No Capitalism” and “No borders, No banks”.

    Protesters were eventually stopped at the bottom of the street by police who confronted them with high frequency sound blasts and orders to disperse. Protesters then redoubled back and confronted cops again in the middle of a residential community. As resistance continued to mount up, anarchists grabbed a dumpster on wheels and hauled it down the hill directly into the police barricade, not harming anyone. The police reacted with more violence by attacking the entire neighborhood with several canisters of OC gas, Oleoresin Capsicum, a new police weapon meant to cause temporary blindness and breathing pain. From then on many different groups broke away in different directions and some marched together back towards Oakland, the neighborhood which houses University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University.

    Police had been bused in from dozens of states including states as far away as Arizona and Florida, along with National Guard and SWAT units. Armed guards with camouflage humvees were stationed at every exit of the beltline around the city, blocking off entry. Most all businesses downtown including cell phone stores, apparel store, banks and restaurants were completely boarded up following Mayor Luke Ravenstahl’s suggestions, putting many workers out of work for the two days while the G-20 meets. At the universities and museums all monuments were also boarded up or covered with bags to continue to promote an atmosphere of fear. Police had to be hauled around town in several city and school buses to head off protesters. Department of Homeland Security and police helicopters have been roaring overhead the city since Wednesday night.

    On their way back to Oakland through the Birchwood neighborhood a few windows were broken by protesters including a cop car window, a window at a PNC bank, BNY Mellon bank and at a BMW dealership, all of which symbolically represent institutions that are responsible for the economic crisis. A few hundred protesters continued to take the streets and make their voices heard throughout the evening. At one point, the protesters stopped the police with a stream of projectiles. Police responded with brutal blows of bean bags, causing injuries. Protesters defended themselves by blockading the street with a large chain link fence obstructing the road.

    At 10 p.m. BASH BACK! organized a protest for LGBTQ liberation in Oakland near Carnegie Mellon University. Nearby at University of Pittsburgh students were gathered close to the bridge to Schenley Park, where Obama had earlier visited Phipps conservatory.

    Heavy-handed police repression ensued, including the usual electronic dispersal order and tear gas, but this only attracted more and more protesters and onlookers, and soon the crowd numbered up to 1000. Reports described students with t-shirts wrapped around their faces chanting “beer pong!” and “LET’S GO PITT!”

    Through the next couple hours cops were chasing students into their dorms, attacking people leaving the bars and arresting folks who were not earlier participating in protests. By the end of the night more than 60 were arrested.

    Help BOPM continue to mobilize to fight for jobs, housing, and health care for all – the week-long mobilization, including the national March for Jobs and the Tent City, was a enormous success, but we need your help to continue on to the next phase of the struggle. Please consider making an urgent donation at http://bailoutpeople.org/donate.shtml.

    g20, bail out the people movement, pittsburghg20, mellon corporate headquarters, pittsburgh

    For updates, photos, video and more from the G-20 see the

    Bail Out the People Movement BLOG


  2. Demand Release of G-20 Detainees! Drop All Charges and End Repression NOW!

    Sign the online petition to Federal Officials, Congressional leaders, the Pennsylvania Congressional Delegation, the Pennsylvania Legislature, the Mayor of Pittsburgh, the Pittsburgh Police Chief, Pittsburgh city officials, Pittsburgh business leaders, the Allegheny County Council and local and national media demanding an immediate release of all detainees, that all charges be dropped, and calling for an independent investigation, at http://www.bailoutpeople.org/releaseg20arrestees.shtml

    Repressive cop forces provoke violence, arrests in Pittsburgh
    Join the call to release all detainees, drop all charges and for an independent investigation now!

    The repressive cop forces of homeland security locked down the people of Pittsburgh during the G-20 economic summit – bringing with them violence, arrests and intimidation. Bail Out the People Movement (BOPM) demands that all 150 arrestees be accounted for and released; all charges be dropped and a public apology be made to the people of Pittsburgh by County Executive Dan Onorato Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, police chief Nate Harper, and other officials responsible for the massive repressive forces and an independent labor-community-student investigation of the repressive actions especially directed against youth.

    On Thurs, Sept. 24 and Fri., Sept. 25, government sweeps by the Pittsburgh police and more than 4,000 additional cops, state troopers and national guard, gave rise to videos and eyewitness reports starkly reminiscent of the repression by U.S. trained military dictatorships in Latin America i.e. youth wrestled into unmarked cars by police dressed in military fatigue uniforms and repressive forces posing for photos with kneeling captives.

    Experiments with high-tech sound weaponry also reportedly used in Honduras, gases and other “less-lethal” crowd control became the order of the day on Sept. 25 when police surrounded and arrested youth gathered in Schenley Plaza near the University of Pittsburgh in the Oakland neighborhood. Arrestees reported that after the order to disperse, all exit routes were blocked and more than 100 people were arrested. Among them was a Pittsburgh-Post Gazette newspaper reporter.

    On the scene, Dante Strobino from FIST (Fight Imperialism, Stand Together) wrote: “The police began to occupy the park and forcefully removed everyone. As students began to gather around to check it out, the riot police got more hyped up. There were no chants, no signs, no banners, no folks dressed in black and no provocation. The police threw several tear gas and smoke bombs at the crowd again and pushed them further back down commercial streets toward bars and restaurants. They also chased people into the huge dormitory towers and attacked students as they left their residences. Students were hanging out the windows, taking pictures in awe.”

    “Forbes St. was blocked off by hundreds of riot cops while surrounding contingents of cops moved in on the other areas of the campus to corral people inside the area. Police brutality had been witnessed with folks being thrown to the ground and shot with rubber bullets, media being pepper sprayed and gassed. Protesters and students alike are being held in the dorm towers unable to leave in fear of arrest. Other students cannot cross Fifth Ave. to get to their residences without being thrown to the ground.”

    “What is most striking about being here is seeing the incredible police repression both Thursday and Friday night in Oakland, near U of Pitt and Carnegie Mellon University, two universities with mostly white, mostly class-privileged students. As Larry Holmes commented during the BOPM Tent City, at any given normal day the police usually target and harass the Black community, but these two days not only are those under normal occupation, but the police are targeting young white folks, too.”

    Sean O’Sullivan, senior at University of Pittsburgh, who was not taking part in the protests earlier in the day, stated “It was the police who started the violence and ended up finishing the violence. It felt like a war zone…the police kept becoming more and more violent, taking over more and more of the street. I couldn’t get to my house even until 3 a.m. on Thursday.”

    Jillian Dowis, sophomore at Ohio University from Students for a Democratic Society who came to Pittsburgh to protest the G-20’s policies, speaking of her experience on the night of Sept. 25, said “After a reporter got maced in face and we brought him to steps of chapel. The cops swarmed around us and arrested guy that was injured, he could barely breath, trying to get him away from crowd. As kids tried to run away they picked us off one by one. My friend called her dad. Then a cop said to us, ‘Shut the f_ck up and get off the goddamn phone’. My friend was was trying to say bye and the cop grabbed her by head and slammed her head into the ground. They were being way forceful and too aggressive and intentionally put on handcuffs way too tight.”

    A 24-hour continuous vigil is ongoing at the Allegheny County Jail until all arrestees are released.

    Sign the online petition at http://www.bailoutpeople.org/releaseg20arrestees.shtml to send email messages to officials demanding the immediate release of those arrested and an independent investigation. The sample text of the appeal follows:

    To: Pittsburgh Mayor Ravenstahl, Pittsburgh City Council, Pittsburgh Police Chief, Allegheny County Council
    CC: PA Congressional Delegation, Congressional Leaders, the PA Legislature, Federal Officials, Pittsburgh business leaders, members of the Pittsburgh and national media

    I demand that the military occupation of Pittsburgh be disbanded immediately; all charges against the people arrested in Pittsburgh on Sept. 24 and 25 especially the youth – including those involved in direct action confronting the G-20 summit – be dropped. Everyone detained must be accounted for and released. I support an independent worker-community-student investigation of the homeland security occupation and repression during the G-20 summit.

    (your name appended here)


    College students trapped in stairwell and gassed, attacked

    Police assault couple in street

    Police pose while taking picture of arrested student


  3. Pingback: Anti-G-20 protesters are ‘terrorists’, Canadian police superintendent says | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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