Thursday, June 30, 2005

ACLU Calls on California Governor to End Surveillance of Peaceful Protesters


SAN FRANCISCO -- Following revelations that an intelligence unit recently spied on a peace rally organized by families of slain American soldiers, the American Civil Liberties Union today called on Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to take immediate steps to stop the California National Guard from spying on people who engage in peaceful protest. The ACLU also filed a California Public Records Act request with both the governor and the California National Guard seeking documents relating to the peace rally and the Intelligence Unit.

"We were shocked to read that a small group of mothers, grandmothers and their supporters were the target of a National Guard terrorist unit," said Mark Schlosberg, Police Practices Policy Director of the ACLU of Northern California. "We fear that the surveillance of the Mother’s Day peace rally is just the tip of the iceberg and urge the governor to take immediate action to prevent this from happening again."

The Mother’s Day incident was revealed in the San Jose Mercury News, which disclosed that a handful of peaceful, anti-war protesters at the Sacramento Capitol were spied on by a special intelligence unit of the National Guard. The May 8 rally was organized by Gold Star Families for Peace, Raging Grannies, and Code Pink.

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