Occupiers have once again deployed the appalling tactic of putting children in danger by using them as human shields.
Children were used as a human blockade as protesters tried to prevent police and bailiffs from clearing an Olympics site.
Four campaigners were arrested as officials, acting on a High Court order, moved in to evict the protest camp at Leyton Marshes where Occupy London activists and residents have been demonstrating over the building of a temporary basketball training facility.
Simon Carleton, 29, Daniel Ashman, 27, Anita Olivacce, 25, and Connor Murray, 24, were appearing at Thames magistrates’ court today on public order offenses.
They were arrested at the site yesterday amid chaotic scenes which saw demonstrators, including a child who looked as young as six, leaping under a lorry and refusing to move.
And the reaction of the Occupy movement? Outrage — at the courts.
Occupy London activist Kris O’Donnell said the group had “100 per cent backing” of local residents.
He added: “We know who the land belongs to and have no obligation to move and no court order can force us to.”
Last November, children were also part of the controversy over the Occupy movement in the U.K., as newspapers reported on children living in drug-infested squalor at an Occupy camp.
Joy Hollister, the director of community and children’s services for the Corporation, provided a witness statement to say she had observed a ‘very strong smell of cannabis in several parts of the camp’ and the presence of several children – two of whom appeared to be living there’,
She said: ‘There was one boy who looked to be between 11 and 13 there with his father. He was spending a lot of time with a group of people who were exhibiting signs of stronger drugs, I observed tracks in people’s arms and stomachs relating to injecting drug use.’
And U.S. Occupiers have frequently put their own children in harm’s way, such as an incident at Occupy D.C. last fall that this video shows:
And there’s also this video of an Occupy Portland protester putting a four year-old on train tracks:
As the Occupy Spring approaches, authorities need to keep a close eye on this desperate practice.