From Voices UK.
Tomorrow, Monday 3 April, the Home Office and Metropolitan Police are appealing against the High Court decision in July last year that Brian Haw - who has been holding a one-person 24/7 peace vigil in Parliament Square since June 2001 - is exempt from the ban on unauthorised protest near Parliament brought in last year under the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act.
The judges decided that the wording of the law, that protestors must seek authorisation before the start of a demonstration, meant that Brian, who has been continuing his protest in Parliament Square since June 2001, did not have to apply for permission - his protest had already started! The government were highly embarrassed that Brian became exempt from the law that they had brought in specifically to evict him.
THE OUTCOME OF THIS APPEAL HAS VERY SERIOUS CONSEQUENCES AND COULD MEAN THAT BRIAN IS EVICTED.
We do not know exactly what will happen if the appeal goes in the Home Office's favour - what the subsequent process will be. However, we must be on the alert to show solidarity with Brian down in Parliament Square when this becomes necessary.
GET DOWN TO THE SQUARE It would be great if some people can be in Parliament Square on Monday - partly to cover Brian's absence and then to support him later on.
Whether the appeal does for or against him, let's demonstrate that Brian has our support. There are also likely to be quite a few members of the press there.
SUPPORT BRIAN AT THE HIGH COURT. Please come and support Brian at 10am, outside the Royal Courts of Justice, The Strand, London on Monday 3 April. There will be a solidarity demonstration outside the court and people can then go in (court 71) to hear the proceedings.
SUPPORT BRIAN'S SUPPORTER!
On Thursday 6 April at 10am Maria Gallastegui, one of Brian's most committed supporters, who has become central to his protest, is appealing against her conviction for demonstrating without authorisation and obstructing arrest at Southwark Crown Court, 1 English Grounds, London SE1 2HU. Join us there to support her.
Voices also reports:
Thanks to everyone who took part in this afternoon's [2 April] "Naming the Dead" event in Parliament Square. Somewhere in the region of 2-400 of us held a four-hour "unauthorised" demonstration in Parliament Square with hundreds of placards and signs, 5 giant puppets and a large banner, reading the names of 1000 Iraqis who have died as a result of the invasion and occupation.
Despite the clear breach of Section 132 of the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act, the police were unwilling or unable to arrest us. To our knowledge this was the first mass act of civil disobedience against the occupation to take place in the UK since the 2003 invasion. It will not be the last!