LDH (Human Rights League) is aware of “2 cases of destruction of press material and arrest of reporters by police forces at the anti-TTIP protests in Brussels last October 15th,” reveals the organisation on Friday. LDH has therefore requested the opening of a “thorough and independent” investigation within the police force into “bullying and deletion of images, contrary to freedom of expression.”
The events revealed by LDH took place during October 15th’s protest actions against TTIP as 600 protesters tried to surround the European summit in Brussels. The League says that policemen allegedly forced a ZIN TV web channel cameraman to delete every shot filmed that day during the protest. An Italian journalist was also arrested by the police after filming a police intervention at the protest march, adds LDH. “Although the reporter showed them his press card, officers grabbed the memory card from his camera. He was the taken to a police van with no explanation. He was driven to the central Brussels-Ixelles police station,” adds the League.
“We request a police investigation to ascertain the facts. We have yet to contact police authorities about this,” revealed LDH. The organisation demands that “perpetrators be identified, and if necessary, punished.” The 2 journalists have hired an attorney, according to the League.
LDH points out that there are several witnesses to police intimidation, and these incidents are reported to them “more and more frequently.” The organisation insists that this type of behaviour “violates the rights of the press to protect their sources, as well as article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights protecting freedom of expression and freedom of the press.”