Protests turn violent near APEC venueMy god, this guy's almost as ugly an American tourist as Clark Griswold!
By Jack Kim
2 hours, 59 minutes ago
PUSAN, South Korea (Reuters) - Thousands of farm activists and union workers hurled bottles in a clash with police near a meeting of Pacific Rim leaders on Friday and had to be quelled by water cannon.
The clash broke out about two km (1.2 miles) from the convention center where leaders from 21 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) economies were meeting.
About 2,000 farmers and farm activists and 3,000 union workers took to the streets of Pusan to denounce APEC, the World Trade Organization and U.S. President George W. Bush, who was attending the leaders' meeting.
Organizers had hoped as many as 100,000 would attend. They said police had turned back busloads of people on highways before they even got to Pusan.
Nearly 30,000 police were deployed in and around the summit. When several hundred protesters who made it to the city tried to get to the venue by pushing past a police line they were stopped.
"We want to hurt them and we want them to hurt us," a farmer from just north of the port city said, as he brandished a weighty three-meter (10-foot) bamboo stick, his face masked with a red handkerchief and his breath smelling of South Korean rice wine.
The protesters threw rocks and bottles and propelled them with bamboo sticks and metal rods. Police repelled the assaults with shields and fired high-pressure sea water.
Friday, November 18, 2005
Posted by Carl at 11/18/2005 10:09:00 AM