Contributed by Adam Carlton
The arrest of four French journalists during a protect at Adani’s Carmichael coal mine in Queensland, show just how sensitive a political issue the project has become.
Ongoing actions by opponents, a series of court cases and ongoing bad publicity have damaged the Adani name and proved a major headache top both the Queensland and Federal governments, which have ben doing all they can to pave the way for the billionaire mining mogul Gautam Adani.
The Adani battle has taken a new twist this year with the state’s section of the emerging Extinction Rebellion movement, joining in on the issue. Using its disruptive tactics in Brisbane and causing traffic chaos has helped to up the ante.
Backers of Adani have called for the passing of new laws to make campaigns that disrupt the operating of business strictly illegal. Many suspect that Adani has a hand in this. The National Party has called for the introduction of “industrial sabotage” laws, to target organised groups and individuals.
Liberal National Party leader Deb Frecklington has come out to say: “Enough is enough, we need to come down tough on these people.”
So strong is the worry that the ongoing controversy will put an end to build Australia’s biggest coal mine.
It is probable that the police action has a direct connection with this declaration of war.
The Four journalists from the public television network France 2, were arrested as they filmed preparations for a blockade outside the coal terminal at Abbot Point. Police claimed later that they were blocking access by filming. Whatever the truth, this was at least an excessive reaction over a minor matter. And it is significant that they were swooped upon, handcuffed and arrested without warning.
This is what happened
Video from The Guardian
This suggests that police responded to a political decision to start getting tough on media coverage.
Mine opponents believe that Adani is likely to have made the call himself. It would fit in with his track record.
they were targeted by the police, which in turn, suggests that it was a political decision, probably called for by Adani himself.
The arrested were taken to nearby Bowen and were released on bail seven hours. They face the Magistrates Court in September to answer trespass charges.
Journalist Hugo Clement said that they were filming about 20 people supporting two who had locked themselves to a concrete barrel.