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Protests and Vandalization Erupt Following IPI Suresha's Remarks On IGS

Selenna Solange • YC121.01.22

A-3ES3, Syndicate - I-RED police forces have been deployed in large numbers to the Bataav Intaki Heritage Site located in the Gamma Residential Sector aboard the Tash-Murkon Refinery, an Astrahus-class citadel operating under I-RED's Operation Grey Steel© investment program. Station Manager Mishka Targalon has urged for calm and cooperation among Gamma Residential Sector inhabitants, who are predominantly of Intaki ethnicity. The police response was triggered following reports of vandalization from a number of individuals present at the time of the protests. I-RCN was unable to confirm whether these individuals were originally a part of the protesters or not.

I-RCN has managed to reach out to I-RED Director of Public Works Roirdan Bouchate for comments on the matter. "Many Intaki living aboard I-RED facilities in the region have directly themselves emmigrated from Placid colonies, or have other connections to Placid Intaki", stated Director Bouchate. "A commonly sited reason for moving to I-RED facilities is the long-standing relationship I-RED has maintained with Placid Intaki promoting peace and prosperity. As a result, many of these Intaki living under the umbrella of I-RED have a very strong sense of loyalty and friendship to our organization. The recent decision of Suresha Bataav of the Intaki Prosperity Initiative with regards to the Semiki situation seems to have triggered a negative response from these groups of people."

Residents aboard I-RED facilities have easy access to fluid router networks which hosts popular sites such as the Intergalactic Summit, where capsuleers often engage in fierce debates and controversial subjects. Such sites are a favorite of tabloids to draw subject matter from. Due to the easy access, it did not take long before word spread of Suresha Bataav's decision to render assistance and support to the Itsukame-Zainou Hyperspatial Inquiry's [IKAME] efforts.

Within hours following the Suresha's statements, protesters gathered by the hundreds on the heritage site's grounds. The site was christened after the esteemed Bataav, who has long been a friend and ally of I-RED. Footage has been circulating of chants and signs which vary in range of controversy. One group of protesters who appeared to be a small family held a sign with the words "TRAITOR TRAITOR TRAITOR" painted on them. Another sign which has been going viral on the popular social media site Peeper™ appears to be an image of a toddler holding a sign that says "Bataav - Once a friend of I-RED, once a friend of Intaki." The protesters were protesting for hours, and remained peaceful throughout the duration of their protests.

After a couple of hours, however, things started taking a different turn when a small group of individuals began encouraging riots and vandalism. According to an estimate by Manager Targalon, these individuals number around a couple dozen or so. Most of them have already been identified and arrested. I-RED police forces are still reviewing footage and witness accounts to determine the identity of those that got away.

"Employees, permanent residents, and guests aboard the Tash-Murkon Refinery are welcomed and encouraged to exercise their personal rights to peacefully assemble, as outlined in the I-RED Corporate Charter", stated Manager Targalon in a press conference just moments ago. "However, I regretfully must reiterate to a troublesome few that such rights do not include vandalizing public and corporate property and attempting to incite riots. Such behavior is simply unacceptable, and those found doing so will be punished accordingly. Protesters are encouraged to maintain their assembly as long as they do so peacefully and legally. Individuals who violate their employment contracts to protest will be warned, fined, and detained according to the policy outlined in the I-RED Corporate Charter."

For now, the protests continue aboard the Tash-Murkon Refinery, although Manager Targalon has ordered a shutdown of the Bataav Intaki Heritage Site grounds while crews initiate clean-up and repair operations following the vandalism.

Elsewhere, on the I-RED sponsored colony of Utpattia in the same system, unverified reports are coming in of protests taking place in Marpiko Grand Park in the city of Atlas. The park is a famous site on the colony for hosting a massive statue which depicts an Intaki man shaking hands with a Caldari man wearing an Ishukone uniform.

When pressed for comment, I-RED Executor Alex Hinkelmann provided the following. "I-RED currently maintains our friendship with the IPI. We respect Suresha Bataav's decisions, and support his wishes to render assistance to the IKAME investigation. I encourage all of our employees and guests to respect his individual decisions as well. We are all on the same team, regardless of how we go about conducting our investigations into the Semiki situation."

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