Elderly couple arrested at Maules Creek protest on wedding anniversary

Written by admin on 30/07/2019 Categories: 苏州美睫

The Victorian couple were the latest protesters to be arrested while stopping work at controversial coal mine near Narrabri in New South Wales.


Pamela Rothfield, 68, told SBS that she and her husband David had chained themselves in place by 6.30am, approximately half an hour before workers arrived.

“They were rather surprised to see us smiling at them from behind the fence,” she said.

Mrs Rothfield also spoke highly of the police, who arrived onsite a few hours later with an angle grinder.

“David and I were locked onto the tread of the pile driver with a right-angled pipe,” she said.

“They had to cut through the metal pipe to release our arms and they did that very well, very gently. We were very politely escorted to the police station.”

Listen: Pamela and David Rothfield speak to Stephanie Anderson.

The couple have been charged with trespass, hindering mining equipment and refusing to vacate the property.

Although they are returning to their Dandenong Ranges home on Thursday, Mrs Rothfield said she hoped they could return.

“We’ve marched in many, many rallies but I must say, marching in a rally is a great thing to feel good on the day… but in the end, it doesn’t really add up to very much,” she said.

“It seems to me the only way to really achieve anything is by direct action.”

Leard Forest Alliance spokeswoman Danielle Hellyer said more than 100 people had been arrested since the blockade began more than 600 days ago.

Ms Hellyer said the arrests included 92-year-old World War II Veteran William Ryan.

“Since December we have had over 120 individuals arrested for various types of nonviolent direct action,” she said.

A Whitehaven Coal spokesman has previously stated that the Maules Creek project had passed a comprehensive, independent assessment process and protesters should respect the final judgment of consent authorities that it proceed.

 “Whitehaven has taken all reasonable and feasible steps to… avoid, mitigate or offset impacts,” the statement read.

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