Anti-Israel protestor's 'kettling' claim dismissed


An anti-Israel protestor who claimed his human rights were violated when he was “kettled” by police during a Palestine solidarity demonstration has failed in his High Court bid for damages.

Joseph Wright, 26, launched his claim after he was forced by Met Police officers into a pen made of metal barriers as Israeli president Shimon Peres arrived to make a speech in London in 2011.

Mr Wright, of County Street, Southwark, said the demonstration, involving only 40 people, was peaceful and there was no reason why he should be kept in a pen.

The case reached the High Court in July, but this week Mr Justice Jay rejected Mr Wright’s claim for £25,000 damages, saying the police actions were justified.

Rejecting Mr Wright’s claim that the action breached his human rights, the judge found that there had been “reasonable grounds” on which the police could believe that a breach of the peace might occur.

“The principle ground for containment was a belief that one or more persons, whoever they might be, would seek to advance at speed in the direction of Mr Peres’s car,” said the judge.

Containment was “both necessary and proportionate”, the judge added.

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