'Do NOT attend': Police issue warning over anti-lockdown protests

·2-min read

NSW Police have issued an urgent warning for anyone planning on attending anti-lockdown protests on the weekend, saying they should expect huge fines if they proceed.

The police urged NSW residents to stay home, saying they are "aware" of planned anti-lockdown protests. 

"Police are aware of unauthorised protest activities planned for this weekend," a post on the NSW Police Force Facebook page read on Tuesday.

Photo of police covered in a black ink from last months' protests.
Police have issued a warning for anyone planning on attending a lockdown protest over the weekend. AFP via Getty Images)

"Do NOT attend.

"Public safety is our first priority and you will be fined or arrested if you turn up #StayAtHome."

Thousands attended last month's protests 

About 3500 people marched in the “Freedom Rally” in Sydney on July 24, with organisers vowing to return. A heavy police campaign disrupted plans for a second protest scheduled for that following weekend.

“In relation to yesterday’s protests, can I say how absolutely disgusted I was. It broke my heart,” Premier Gladys Berejiklian said at the time.

NSW Police Minister David Elliott 57 people were arrested during the July protests, while more than 90 attendees were given infringement notices.

Last week, 73 people in Melbourne were arrested after gathering in the CBD to protest the state's extended lockdown.

"Police had a highly visible presence in the CBD and were pleased that the majority of Victorians did the right thing and stayed home," a police spokeswoman said.

She said police will not hesitate to fine those who "deliberately and blatantly" breach restrictions.

NSW records 452 new cases of Covid-19

NSW recorded 452 locally acquired cases on Tuesday, as the state records its fourth straight day cases above 400.

Ms Berejiklian said it's likely the number will continue to rise, saying September and October will be "our most difficult months." 

"We envisage that case numbers in the next two or three weeks will bounce around and are likely to rise substantially," she said.

On Monday, eight people passed away from Covid-19 related deaths, including a 15-year-old boy who was hospitalised with pneumococcal meningitis.

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