- Created: Wednesday, 20 June 2012 11:46
- Written by Manchester FRFI
On Sunday 17 June Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! (FRFI) joined a protest in Piccadilly Gardens, Manchester, to demand justice for victims of police murder in Britain. The Justice 4 Grainger campaign organised the demonstration as part of a national day of action supported by friends and families of some of the people who have lost their lives at the hands of the state. Since 2000 at least 33 people have been shot dead by British police and about 419 have died in police custody, yet not one police officer has been convicted for these deaths. The murder of Anthony Grainger on 3rd March 2012 by armed police thugs (see www.revolutionarycommunist.org/index.php/reports/manchester-reports/2521-justice-for-anthony-grainger) has sparked a militant campaign led by those closest to Anthony, leading to this first public demonstration on 17th June. The campaign demands justice for all victims of police murder and calls for those responsible for Anthony's death to be brought to trial.
Up to 150 people gathered in Piccadilly Gardens for a lively vigil with music and speeches demanding justice. Justice 4 Grainger's Wes Ahmed and other members of Anthony Grainger's family spoke passionately of his still recent death, asking why police officers are literally allowed to get away with murder on the streets of working class neighbourhoods in Britain. Janet Alder, the sister of Christopher, who died in police custody in Hull in 1998, spoke of her long struggle for justice (index.php/fight-racism/1240-stop-deaths-in-custody—frfi-162-august—september-2001), talking about the unwritten law which allows the police to escape prosecution for their crimes: 'This is the kind of law that can only be changed by the people!'
FRFI's Charles Chinweizu gave the political context for the continued police attacks, speaking of the state's quick-fire judicial response to the uprisings across Britain in August 2011, with a witch-hunt which gave scores of working class people long sentences for minimal 'crimes', compared with British governments' non-existent responses to attacks by the police:
'Have the police killers of Mark Duggan or Azelle Rodney or Anthony Grainger been brought before a court in the middle of the night nor remanded in custody? Of course not.'
On the demonstration FRFI drew links with the brutal wave of cutbacks facing working class people, and the constant arming of the state by successive Labour and ConDem governments. A lot of working class people stopped to support the protest and share their own experiences in police injustice. Following the protest in Piccadilly, around 80 people marched to Bootle Street police station.
The Justice 4 Grainger campaign has made a good start in mobilising ordinary people against the violence of the British imperialist police. Anthony's friends and family and other people involved know that this is just the beginning. FRFI is committed to supporting the struggle ahead to bring these killer cops to justice.
Justice for Grainger!
No justice – no peace!