Australian prime minister demands investigation into D.C. police assault on Australian journalists

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Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and foreign minister Marise Payne have demanded an investigation into the attacks by police in Washington, D.C. on two of Australia’s television reporters Monday night. “We have asked the Australian embassy in Washington, DC to investigate this incident,” Payne said. “I want to get further advice on how we would go about registering Australia’s strong concerns with the responsible local authorities in Washington,” she continued, in advance of bringing a formal complaint. The journalists were shoved, clubbed, shot with rubber bullets, and tear gassed. This is what Australian viewers saw on their television last night:

These are among the more than 100 incidents in which journalists were specifically and deliberately targeted by police during protests around the nation. The National Press Club is calling on law enforcement, mayors and governors across the country to halt the unprecedented assault against journalists in the field covering the protests for social justice.

NiemanLab highlights efforts by numerous journalists and organizations to track the attacks. The U.S. Press Freedom Tracker is investigating more than 100 attacks on journalists in just the last three days, more than they had seen in all of the last three years. From May 28-31, at least 19 journalists were arrested; 36 were shot at by police with rubber bullets, half of them in Minnesota; and 76 reported assaults, including being shot at, with 80% of those attacks by police.

“We are at a crossroads for our nation,” the press organizations wrote in their letter to officials. “Over the past 72 hours police have opened fire with rubber bullets, tear gas, pepper spray, pepper balls and have used nightsticks and shields to attack the working press as never before in this nation. This must stop. This is against all training and best practices of policing.”

“These cities belong to all of us,” the letter continues. “The people that live in them will learn of your bravery and courage and training through news coverage by journalists. Do not fire upon them. Do not arrest them. The world is watching. Let the Press tell the story.” The world is definitely watching.

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3 Comments on "Australian prime minister demands investigation into D.C. police assault on Australian journalists"

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Dave
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Dave
It’s not just the Aussie press that is being attacked if the truth be told it started with American Press reporters CNN and it appears as though the cops are hyped and are just attacking anything that moves, the only good thing that has come out of this attack is that the cop responsible for the attack on the press reporters was identified by other video footage, on many occasions the press have identified themselves as press yelling it out at the cops and the cops have said that they don’t care. Never a truer word that has been spoken,… Read more »
fishouttaH2o
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fishouttaH2o
trump says that the press is the enemy of the people. The assault on journalists is intentional. They want them cowed & afraid to cover the protests. If nobody is watching no telling what they might get away with. Cops got away with murdering black citizens for decades, until people got cell phones & started videoing them. Glad to see cops are being fired for their excessive use of force on protestors & they need to be fired for assaulting reporters too. I do not approve of the looters but this country has a long history of protestors and I… Read more »
David Bishop
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David Bishop

Oink, oink.