NSW Premier Chris Minns has responded to peace protests that were carried out in Sydney over the weekend for the fifth consecutive week, indicating the cost per protest was close to $1 million in NSW Police resources. Thousands gathered calling for the release of hostages in Moore Park, while organisers of a rally calling for a ceasefire and a free Paletsine in the Sydney CBD said that more than 50 000 people had joined the march on Sunday.
“Keeping people safe while they come together to grieve the killing of civilians and call for action is core police work,” Greens MP and spokesperson for justice Sue Higginson said. “Communities have a right to safely join the global calls for a ceasefire, to release hostages and to end the killing of innocent children. People need to be able to express their political anger and pain collectively and safely.
“I urge the Labor Government to go beyond ensuring the police do their job at the protests and listen to what the people are calling for - to end Australia’s complicity in the violence, and take action. The Premier should now heed that call by writing to his federal colleagues urging that they join the global call for a ceasefire.
“Communities across Western Sydney are saying they’re tired of Labor MPs showing up for a photo opportunity during religious festivals but effectively abandoning them in their most desperate hours of need. When civilian lives were violently taken by Hamas on 7 October, the Premier was quick to react, to light up the Opera House and to support those who were mourning. Since then, more than 11 000 civilians have been brutally killed by Israeli forces, half of them children. That’s 10 days of Opera House lighting for Palestinian lives lost in the last five weeks, and three months for the last 75 years.
“Peaceful protest and the freedom to gather and express political views together is a mark of a mature and functioning democracy and is something we should never compromise, whatever the cost.” Ms Higginson said.
For media contact Sue Higginson: 0428 227 363