Anti-Bush Protesters Battle Police at Chile Summit
by reposts Friday, Nov. 19, 2004 at 12:59 PM http://www.indybay.org/news/2004/11/1706111.php
SANTIAGO, Chile (Reuters) - Hooded anti-American marchers protesting an Asia-Pacific summit in Chile on Friday hurled Molotov cocktails and stones at police who retaliated with water cannons and tear gas.
Chilean protesters run from riot police as demonstrators marched through downtown Santiago, November 19, 2004. Leaders of the 21 member countries of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation(APEC) gathered here for their annual meeting as activists took to the streets to show their opposition. REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado
Police estimated the number of marchers at 25,000, but protest leaders said the real number was 70,000.
"The turnout is much bigger than we'd expected. This is a polite response to Bush's barbarity," said Ernesto Medina, a march organizer.
APEC officials were far away in their hotels or in a convention center overlooking the foothills of the Andes on the outskirts of Santiago.
Protest organizers from leftist, indigenous and environmental groups said the rights of workers and the need to protect the environment were being ignored in the free-trade agreements promoted by APEC members.
A violent minority pulled shirts over their faces and started throwing rocks when the march ended in Santiago's Bustamante park. They broke up park benches and burned a U.S. flag.
Police doused them with water cannons and fired tear gas from armored vehicles at protesters who dodged behind trees. They made about 40 arrests.
At least one person, who looked like a marcher, was hurt, and was carried into an ambulance with blood streaming from his head.
Chile's government canceled all police leave and decreed a public holiday in Santiago on Friday as part of the strict security.
Chilean protesters hide behind a tree as they are blasted by a police water cannon when hundreds of demonstrators marched through downtown Santiago, November 19, 2004. Leaders of the 21 member countries of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC ) gathered here for their annual meeting as activists took to the streets to show their opposition. REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado
Chilean protesters run as they are blasted by a police water cannon in downtown Santiago, November 19, 2004.
apec 2004 – chile – www.agp.org
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