A number of legal figures have spoken out about their concerns over Saturday’s clash between Strathclyde Police and the Green Brigade.
Two hundred police officers swooped in on a planed march from the Gallowgate with 13 arrests made and video clips of the incidents quickly appearing on social media.
Older supporters were stunned by the images with many making comparisons with the tactics used in the eighties to deal with industrial disputes such as the miners strike and News International’s move to Wapping.
“From what I’ve seen, this is total overkill,” Brian McConnachie QC told the Herald. “I don’t care which team you support. How can this be considered a proportionate response to what seemed to be a peaceful protest.
We’ll know pretty soon exactly what went on, given the amount of video footage. It’s a fine line between an unlicensed procession and a police state. If the police believed there was going to be an issue they had days to resolve it. They’d an opportunity to discuss it. It’s pretty clear 200 officers with cameras and batons just seemed to be on hand for an unexpected incident.
“I’ve some degree of sympathy with the police. The SNP Government, the Crown Office and our ‘Green Brigade supporting’ Lord Advocate Mr Mulholland have created a policy, made it such a big issue police have no option but to react in a particular way. We’re also seeing this treated at summary level by sheriffs who are not inclined to disbelieve police.”
The SNP group leader on Glasgow City Council Graeme Hendry added: “I have been contacted by constituents concerned at the behaviour of Strathclyde Police on Saturday.
“Having seen photos of the kettling technique seemingly employed by the police on Saturday, I would also add my own concern at the appropriateness and proportionality of this technique.”
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