Returns with 'clear message that we?re here to stay'

Student anti-police site returns after shutdown

A site set up by student activists to resist ‘forward intelligence policing’ was shut down following the Millbank student fees riot.

The campaigners moved swiftly to rehost the site and republish the information on other sites and via social networking channels. The front page carries the beligerant message: "We’re back: Thanks to the metropolitan police for giving us such huge coverage and making us stronger."

The Fitwatch website was originally shut down by web hosts JustHost following an email from the metropolitan police e-crime unit. The site offered advice to students involved in the protest to destroy clothes and change appearance.

The note from the police, seen by the Guardian, said that authority to shut down the web site had been provided by acting detective inspector of the CO11 public order branch, Will Hodgeson. The campaigners cited Hodgeson’s involvement, as the head of police "forward intelligence teams", as political intimidation.

Fitwatch campaign organisers said that the site was a response to press coverage divulging information about protestors including the Telegraph’s ‘rogues gallery coverage’.

The web site informs visitors that it has returned "with a secure server, massive coverage and a clear message that we’re here to stay." The information has also been mirrored on what Fitwatch campaigners said was more than 100 sites, saying "we haven’t managed to count them all."

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