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Occupy London's reaction to Canary Wharf injunction

 

Occupy London was intrigued to learn this morning that Canary Wharf Group plc has obtained a high court injunction preventing “any persons unknown remaining on the Canary Wharf estate in connection to protest action.” We understand that this court order will remain in place indefinitely.

We would like to take this opportunity to reassure Canary Wharf Group plc.

Occupy London has visited Canary Wharf on two separate occasions over the course of the occupation to date, organising public debates as part of its Tent City University about the state of our economic system with speakers from across the political spectrum, including James Meadway of the New Economics Foundation and Jonathan Portes, a former advisor to Gordon Brown.

On our visits to Canary Wharf, we have found it to be an absurdly over-securitised place, lacking all social amenities, save those of work and consumerism. Like much of London, Canary Wharf is privately owned, but its character is the result of a deliberate attempt to create a “public space” in which the public is not welcome.

Over the course of this week, Occupy London has engaged in productive discussion with St Paul’s Cathedral and the City of London Corporation, both of whom have recognised the vital role free speech and political participation play in a democratic society. We have conducted ourselves with order and dignity throughout, as has been recognised by all sides. Like their counterparts on Paternoster Square, the owners of Canary Wharf appear to be deeply afraid of legitimate debate: it is worth asking why this is so.

Notes:

[1] http://www.metro.co.uk/news/880548-court-bans-new-canary-wharf-camp-after-st-pauls-protest

 
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