Nationwide rallies for David Hicks

April 21, 2007

Civil rights and anti-war activists rallied around Australia on April 21 to demand immediate freedom for David Hicks and the closure of the US's military prison in Guantanamo Bay.

In Melbourne, 250 people were addressed by David's father, Terry Hicks, Greens Senator Bob Brown and Martin Kingham from the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union. Terry spoke about the gag order on his son, which he described as an attempt to remove freedom of speech and prevent David from speaking out before the federal election. "I still say he's not guilty. He's never had a proper trial."

In Sydney, 150-200 people rallied to hear former Guantanamo detainee Mamdouh Habib speak, along with Greens Senator Kerry Nettle, anti-war activist Raul Bassi and civil rights campaigner Tim Anderson. Anderson described the mockery of justice in Hicks's case, pointing out that Hicks pleaded guilty to a crime that doesn't exist, was tried in a court that is not a court and was tortured into agreeing that he wasn't tortured. Terry Hicks will speak at a public forum on May 19, 5pm, at the Tom Mann Theatre in Surry Hills.

One hundred people rallied in Adelaide, and protests were also held in Adelaide, Canberra and Brisbane. In Wollongong and Sydney, the protesters vowed to join the demonstrations being planned against US President George Bush when he visits Sydney in September for APEC meetings.

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