Authorities in Poland are utilizing increasingly abusive tactics against peaceful demonstrators in women-led protests over abortion rights, according to activists.
Police have thrown protesters around the floor, struck them with telescopic batons, and utilized kettling — a strategy that involves applying blockades to include a bunch within a restricted area — a human rights attorney that has been representing the demonstrators informed Euronews.
Witnesses stated plainclothes officers, none of whom were donning armbands identifying them as authorities, beat demonstrators with batons past Wednesday night. Authorities also allegedly used tear gas against protesters.
At least 60 protesters, including one as young as 17, have been arrested in recent months, based on Eliza Rutynowska.
This figure is greater than the number of individuals arrested during a so-called”liberty march” through the Polish capital Warsaw when nationalists and far-right individuals violently clashed with authorities.
“We are aware that many of these protesters are being manhandled when they’re accepted to police cars and throughout the detainments themselves,” Rutynowska added.
Amnesty International has stated that it had been”horrified” concerning the reported violence and voiced deep concerns in the detentions of the protesters.
Police allegedly confront young Men and Women
Additionally, there are claims that young men and women, in some instances minors, have been arrested or intimidated by police.
1 17-year-old protester was held in police custody, and while he’s legally considered a little, he’s old enough to be subject to criminal liability under the law, based on Rutynowska.
A 14-year-old boy who’d shared information about Facebook about a solidarity march with all the women’s protests had police officers turn up at his door whilst he had been taking part in distant classes, the attorney said.
She asserts he chased him with the possibility of criminal charges, stating he had participated in an illegal action, and they contacted his college.
A 14-year-old woman was faced by a police officer while she had been participating in a solidarity march with her grandma, Rutynowska explained.
“It has a large quantity of tension and pressure placed on young people and young citizens which shouldn’t be there,” Rutynowska explained.
No police officers were subject to disciplinary proceedings for violence involving the peaceful protesters, based on Rutynowska.
Polish authorities came under criticism on November 19 for using tear gas and pressure mostly female and youthful protesters.
But observing the episode, Interior Minister Mariusz Kaminski told parliament that the police officers used force since they discovered themselves”under attack” from the protesters.
“He (Kaminski) calls for the action of the authorities force sufficient… so that I do not feel as they’ll be prosecuted for anything they have done farther,” the attorney said.
She added that although many police officers are silent, a few are talking out, together with all the Polish Society of Anti-Discrimination Law starting a pro bono job to encourage officers that openly back protesters.
Political tensions are high because of the judgment, which the government has yet to print and consequently enshrine as legislation due to the massive pressure in the mass street protests.
A standoff with the European Union above a principle of regulation mechanism in addition to a surge in coronavirus infections and frustration over the government’s management of this pandemic are contributing to a way of deepening crisis in the nation.