Dale Farm: Evictions Begin
Police in riot gear staged a dawn raid on the Travellers' site at Dale Farm this morning, "using sledgehammers to break down a wall of a fully legal plot on the edge of the site" according to Dale Farm Solidarity.
Police were photographed using tasers as they entered the site, and at least two people have been reported injured by The Guardian. ITV News footage showed a person, identified by the Daily Mail as Irish Traveller woman Nora Egan, being stretchered off the site by paramedics.
In spite of the Police's violent entry, tasers in hand, it took Basildon Council leader Tony Ball just over an hour to condemn "The pre-meditated and organised scenes of violence that we have already seen with protesters throwing rocks and bricks".
The Association of Chief Police Officers has stated that tasers should not be used as a crowd control measure.
Dale Farm resident Mary Sheridan, who has taken her children off the site to a legal plot owned by her family, told The Guardian that
"The only premeditated violence has come from the police — they knew exactly what they were doing when they started beating and Tasering people. This is not how a community should be treated by its own council. It's illegal for us to travel, but illegal for us to settle down here. We're getting hit by the police but we've got nowhere else to go."