Video: Australia’s Prime Minister Julia Gillard rescued from angry protesters by police

January 26, 2012


Australia’s Prime Minister Julia Gillard rescued from angry protesters by police



Prime Minister Julia Gillard is escorted out for safety by body guards and police through a crowd of rowdy protesters following a ceremony to mark Australia’s national day in Canberra, Australia, Thursday Jan. 26, 2012. Some 200 supporters of indigenous rights surrounded a Canberra restaurant and banged its windows on Thursday while Gillard and opposition leader Tony Abbott were inside officiating at an award ceremony. (AP Photo/Lukas Coch)


Julia Gillard is dragged away from the protest by her security officers. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen

Palash R. Ghosh
International Business Times

Julia Gillard, the Prime Minister of Australia, and leader of the opposition party, Tony Abbott, had to be rescued from a horde of angry protesters who briefly trapped them inside a restaurant in the capital Canberra.

The bizarre episode took place on the Australia Day holiday when a group of about 200 supporters of aboriginal rights surrounded the Lobby restaurant. About fifty police officers escorted the two politicians to safety.

The protesters support something called the Aboriginal Tent Embassy – a semi-permanent settlement that exists on the lawn of the Old Parliament in Canberra. Established in 1972, it fancies itself an “embassy” for Australia’s aboriginals and demands various land rights and concessions for these peoples.

Apparently, Abbott angered the group by declaring the camp should be dismantled. He had said in a TV interview that the country’s constitution will recognize the rights of indigenous peoples.

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