Demonstrators hold banners at an Office Depot store in Miami November 19, 2003. Protesters said the chain of office supply stores is the ‘FTAA Poster Child of Deforestation’. Thousands of demonstrators protested against the FTAA. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
A demonstrator gestures to riot police during protests against meetings of the Free Trade Area of the Americas in Miami, November 20, 2003. Demonstrators gathered on Biscayne Boulevard to protest as FTAA ministers met in a nearby hotel. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
Animal rights activists march during demonstrations against meetings of the Free Trade Area of the Americas in Miami November 20, 2003. Dozens of groups participated in protests as ministers of the FTAA met nearby. REUTERS/Marc Serota
A protester receives aid from a medical worker during demonstrations against meetings of the Free Trade Area of the Americas in Miami November 20, 2003. The protester said he was hit by a police baton. Riot police attacked demonstrators as ministers of the FTAA met in a nearby hotel. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
Protesters placed gags over their mouths to protest the City of Miami’s passage of a law banning objects including wood greater than one quarter-inch-thick, glass bottles, and even golf balls prior to the protests against the FTAA.
Thousands of Steelworkers joined the permitted march against the FTAA. Most wore “FTAA Sucks” t-shirts. Photo: Dannah Baynton
Marchers carry “Free Theft Area of the Americas” signs to the permitted rally. Photo: Chris Jones
Union members wore their grievances with the FTAA on their backs. Photo: John Mathew Davis
Police used violence against peaceful protesters in Miami and violated people’s Constitutional rights to protest. Police were heavily armed with protective riot gear and armed with tear-gas, pepper-spray, batons, tasers, and guns that fired rubber bullets, pepper pellets, “bean-bags,” and other projectiles.
Police assaulted and arrested protesters, usually without cause, at the FTAA protests.
Police tasered this man at the entrance to a permitted rally sponsored by CTC, the AFL-CIO, and other groups. Officers then forced CTC members, Steelworkers, and others to lie face down on the ground at gunpoint.
Video taken by independent journalists shows that police began firing rubber bullets and pepper pellets at protesters without cause outside a large permitted rally on November 20.
Police shot this woman in the back and head with rubber bullets while she was attempting to move away from an advancing line of riot police.
Volunteer medics assisted injured protesters and bystanders in Miami.
Police were equipped with tank-like armored personnel carriers. The City of Miami was allotted $8.5 million from appropriations for military and reconstruction operations in Iraq and Afghanistan to use during the FTAA protests.
Demonstrators protest at a rally in front of the City of Miami Jail, November 21, 2003. Demonstrators who gathered outside a Miami jail to protest the arrest of their colleagues during this week’s trade talks were themselves arrested after defying police orders to disperse. Photo by Marc Serota/Reuters
Pedestrians move aside as police in riot gear move down the street towards the City of Miami Jail, in Miami, Florida November 21, 2003. Police arrested over 40 more people November 21st at the jail solidarity rally. Over a hundred were arrested November 20 during the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) meetings. REUTERS/Marc Serota
Miami Police Chief John Timoney oversaw police operations in Miami for the FTAA protests. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton