‘Snatch squads’ caught on camera at London student rally

Russia Today
15.11.2011

A YouTube video shot during the November 9 student rally in London allegedly shows plainclothes police acting as agents provocateurs among the protesting crowds.

The video uploaded by the user “noshockdoc” shows two people who first engage in rough handling of one of the rally protesters. Then, reportedly, the same people are shown along with six others detaining someone behind a police cordon.

RT got in touch with the creator of the video, a 40-year-old managing director of his own start-up company, who preferred to remain unnamed.

Not your stereotypical protester, as “noshockdoc” calls himself, he went to the demo to protest against the policy, which is bound to divide British education system into two tiers, based on wealth, not merit.

He says the episode shown on the video occurred during the end of the march and is very disturbing. It looked like a fight was provoked by plainclothes policemen, while their uniformed colleague turned a blind eye to it.

“A young member of the British public had been attacked and left visibly shaken, and the very person he would have expected to help him turned away. And on top of that it was a police officer that attacked him,” he told RT.

The media dubbed the November 9 march against tuition fees and education cuts one of the most intensively-policed events to take place in London. The force had 4,000 officers on duty on the day, and they were authorized to use rubber bullets if necessary. This was never needed, however. The Met reported that 24 arrests were made on the day.

Some of the protesters reported incidents of violence which they said had been caused by the security forces. “The police tried to provoke people to react violently, and some people had to act in self-defense against police attacks, but we all supported one another and prevented the police from causing a riot,” one of the activists, identified only as ‘Dan’, told the Oxford University student newspaper Cherwell.

Another demonstrator, Nathan Akehurst, claimed that “undercover police snatch squads attacked and grabbed people from the demo, and an arrest was made on board a coach with the only apparent reason being that the student had a felt-tip pen.”

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