• The Invasion Day rally in The Domain, Sydney. (AAP)Source: AAP
A peaceful invasion day march has been called off due to alleged threats from police, with five protestors arrested in Hyde Park.
Mikele Syron

26 Jan 2021 - 3:33 PM  UPDATED 26 Jan 2021 - 3:33 PM

Sydney’s peaceful invasion day march was cancelled after organisers alleged police threatened them with intimidation after thousands gathered in The Domain to listen to First Nations people, with protesters wearing masks and complying with social distancing.

Shortly after 11:30am organisers announced that the peaceful event had been cancelled after five protesters were arrested.

Two of the people will be charged with COVID breaches, one will be charged with hindering police and another will be charged with assaulting an officer.

Event organiser and Gomeroi woman Gwenda Stanley told NITV News that the police presence at the event was overwhelming, with police allegedly having threatened to move in on protestors since early this morning.

“I’m not happy with the police threatening to incite a riot, to smash us. What is that? 

“I don’t want anyone hurt, we have never been violent protestors, so I think cancelling the march was a sensible idea,” Ms Stanley said.

The arrests follow yesterday's warning from the police that protesters would be fined or arrested if the rally at The Domain exceeded the current health orders limiting gatherings to 500 people. Organisers said the event would go ahead despite the restrictions, “rain, hail, shine or fire”.

While the rally itself was peaceful, with protestors congregating in small groups, organisers have said that their attempts to work with the NSW government and police to agree on a COVID-safe approach had fallen on deaf ears.