COURT ON STANDBY FOR SIT-IN
THE Attorney-General could still seek a court order on Thursday to stop a mass sit-in on Brisbane’s Story Bridge on Saturday, if talks with refugee rights activists fail.
Brisbane Supreme Court was told on Monday there was to be a meeting between protesters, Australian Border Force and Queensland Police.
On Monday, Refugee Solidarity Brisbane/Meanjin, a group involved in a refugee protest collective, said the meeting with Border Force would be at noon Tuesday.
Last Saturday, Justice Peter Applegarth made orders that prevented a sit-in of thousands of people on Brisbane’s Story Bridge in support of refugees detained in a Kangaroo Point motel.
Refugee activists wanted a meeting with Border Force to discuss the “free movement” of asylum seekers outside the hotel.
Justice Applegarth on Monday set down a two-hour hearing for Thursday, in case the AttorneyGeneral decided to proceed with a new injunction application if protesters did not apply for a protest under the Peaceful Assembly Act.
Late on Friday, protesters said last Saturday’s sit-in would be postponed until next Saturday.
However, the Attorney-General still applied for an injunction and after a two-hour hearing on
Saturday, Justice Applegarth made orders effectively preventing that day’s protest.
Two people named as protest organisers, Jarrah Kershaw and Laura Harland, were ordered not to attend or encourage others to attend that day’s planned bridge sit-in.
They also were ordered not to block the public’s right of way on or near the bridge, but that order was removed on Monday. Counsel for Mr Kershaw and Ms Harland, Greg Barns SC, on Monday told Justice
Applegarth that the pair were not the sit-in protest organisers.
Outside court on Monday, Mr Kershaw and Ms Harland said: “We are simply standing in solidarity for the men who have been locked up for more than seven years.”