The northern coastal town of Gdansk in Poland has suffered particularly heavy damaged from the public rioting during the past week.
AERIAL Vs Fires and burning building Gdansk
SV Building and firemen fighting blaze (5 shots)
SV Wreckage and burned out bus (4 shots)
SV Firemen clearing wreckage
GV People and traffic in streets (4 shots)
SCU Swedish journalist interviewed.
TRANSCRIPT: SEQ. 6: INTERVIEWER: "About lunch-time it started?"
JOURNALIST: "Yes it started in the docks and harbour. A lot of the workers tried to go up the central part of the town, to try to make a protest march against (INDISTINCT)."
INTERVIEWER: "They were seated off by police then?"
JOURNALIST: "They were not allowed to go up and the police made some kind of "iron circle" around the harbour. I couldn't go near the harbour because nobody was allowed to go there, but I could see all the police standing, and I could see the workers behind."
INTERVIEWER: "And then in the town you witnessed several larcens?"
JOURNALIST: "Yes. After the armed cars had run into the streets people began to broke windows of the local party building and they also threw out a lot of things. For example, from the party archive, and also there was some furniture and everything was applauded by the people standing in the streets."
INTERVIEWER: "Did you see any hooligans?"
JOURNALIST: "No I didn't see any hooligans."
Initials OJP/AS/BB/2329 OJP/AS/BB/0013
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The northern coastal town of Gdansk in Poland has suffered particularly heavy damaged from the public rioting during the past week. Violent outbursts of street fighting between the public and militia resulted in a mounting toll of deaths and injuries. Each pocket of rioting added to a trail of damaged and burning buildings through the town. The violence had been sparked off by sharp rises in food and fuel prices.
In both Gdansk and Szczecin, another Polish port, striking shipyard workers led many of the groups of protesters. Police and militia attempted to cordon off trouble areas as curfews were imposed. Armoured cars and tanks helped seal off streets and main roads, and on occasions the coastal towns were isolated from the rest of Poland.
Radio station sin the Polish Baltic attributed much of the disturbance and unrest to youngsters of ten and eleven, and warned parents to keep them off the streets and to discourage the widespread looting which followed the street fighting.
A Swedish journalist who managed to flee the area, told a reporter on Friday (18 December) what he saw.