Truthout.org & Reuters – 2006-03-06 23:07:28
US Cops Arrest Women outise UN Building
Anti-war protestors including Iraqi women and peace activist Cindy Sheehan were arrested and brutalized by New York police after officials at the US Mission to the UN refused to meet with delegation from Women Say No to War. The group of women visiting from Iraq and Gold Star Families for Peace had planned to present a petition signed by 72,000 women calling for US withdrawal from Iraq.
Rebecca MacNeice was on the ground in New York filming the events when the arrests took place. Rebecca described the police as very rough. She said that many in the crowd were thrown against a building, including the press. She described the arrestees as being “dragged off” in a rough manner.
Truth Out also spoke to Cindy Sheehan’s sister, Dee Dee Miller, who spoke to Cindy after the arrest. Dee Dee said that Cindy indicated that the police were very rough with her and the other three arrested. She said that they were requesting an ambulance, but we have not confirmed that anyone was seriously injured.
Ann Wright, who was also on the scene, confirmed that the police were very rough and described that the arrestees were carried with their arms behind their backs. She said at times that their arms were raised very high, which could have caused an injury. We will have footage of the arrests very soon.
Eyewitness to Arrests
Steve Kent / Democracy Now!
NEW YORK (March 6, 2006) — Cindy Sheehan and three other activists [were arrested] at the UN today when they attempted to deliver a petition with 72,000 signatures organized by womensaynotowar.org to the United States mission.
The four are being held now at Police Service Area 4, 8th Street and Avenue C, on their way to the DA’s office. They are to be charged with resisting arrest. Sheehan is apparently rather injured from the arrest, according to Rev. Patti Ackerman, who just called from custody, with a wrenched arm and bruises on her torso and head from being dropped on the pavement.
After initially telling the activists they could deliver the petitions to a receptionist at the US Mission, where they had an appointment to do so, the New York police cited a change of plan from “higher up” and moved in to prevent the delivery and arrest the activists.
In addition to rough handling of Ms. Sheehan, one of the Iraqi women with the group was punched in the stomach. This according to Rev. Ackerman on the phone. One broadcast producer with whom I spoke who saw footage of the incident said the police were “particularly nasty” in their handling of the women.
Cindy Sheehan Arrested in NY Protest
NEW YORK (March 6, 2006) — Cindy Sheehan, the anti-war activist whose son was killed in the Iraq war, was arrested with three other protesters in New York on Monday after a rally with women from Iraq.
Sheehan became a central figure in the US anti-war movement last summer after she camped outside President George W. Bush’s Texas ranch and has been arrested at least two other times at protests.
On Monday, she had joined a delegation of women from Iraq at the rally at the United Nations, urging the United Nations to help prevent civil war in Iraq.
About 20 protesters went to the US mission to the United Nations to deliver a petition with 60,000 signatures seeking an end to the war. Nobody from the mission received them so Sheehan and three other American women sat down in front of the building, refused to leave, and were arrested. A police spokesman said they were expected to be released later on Monday.
The Iraqi women plan to deliver a petition to the White House on Wednesday. Earlier they held a news conference at UN headquarters calling for the United States to withdraw its forces.
Entisar Mohammad Ariabi, a pharmacist at Baghdad’s Yarmook Teaching Hospital, wept as she told reporters of the hardships experienced by Iraqi women.
“US occupation has destroyed our country, made it into a prison,” she said. “Schools are bombed, hospitals are bombed. We thank you, Mr. Bush, for liberating our country from Saddam. But now, go out! Please go out!” she said.
Cindy Sheehan and Three Others Arrested
t r u t h o u t | Press Release
NEW YORK (March 6, 2006) — Today four women, including peace activist, Cindy Sheehan, were arrested at the United Nations while trying to deliver a petition with more than 60,000 signatures urging the “withdrawal all troops and all foreign fighters from Iraq.”
Arrested were: Sheehan, Gold Star Families for Peace; Medea Benjamin, co-founder of CODEPINK: Women for Peace; Missy Beattie, Gold Star Families for Peace; and Rev. Patricia Ackerman.
A delegation of women from Iraq and Gold Star Families for Peace had just concluded a press conference in front of the UN calling for an end to the US occupation of Iraq. The group then marched to the US Mission to deliver a petition.
The US Mission office refused to send a representative to meet with the delegation of women. The women refused to leave without delivering the signatures to someone in the US Mission’s office and were later arrested.
“I am outraged that the US Mission could not send someone down to meet with a delegation of women whose lives and families have been shattered by this destructive and immoral war,” said Ann Wright, former US Army Colonel and US diplomat. Wright was physically assaulted by security officers during the arrests.
• To view the full text of the petition, go to: http://www.womensaynotowar.org
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