On May 16th, over 1000 people gathered to participate in the occupation movement festival in Lund, which featured food, music, entertainment and of course SQUATTING! During Saturday two buildings, Bredgatan 4 and Observatory in the City Park were occupied, and during the night so were Sunday two unused buildings on the St Lars.
In addition to the imaginative tactics the activists used to outwit the cops, different blocks were subject to random and ordered police violence.
Making a comeback to street politics was the re-appearance of padded and white-suited protesters (Ya Basta-style (Italy) and Womble style (London) who use their block to push through static police lines. You can see these in action in the photo galleries.
25th of May in the morning, police evicted squat “Pila” in Ligovsky prospect in St. Petersburg, which had existed for half a year. While police was breaking in, people managed to escape from windows with some valuables, and no-one was arrested. However many valuables were also stolen or destroyed by the cops, for example musical instruments of the squatters. 8 people were living in “Pila” and many activities were organised there. As most Russian squats, “Pila” was clandestine and its existence was not openly announced. Another such squat where concerts were organised was also recently uncovered in Vasilevsky island, and it had to be abandonded due to security threats.
Brunnen 183 to be evicted June 18th. Get mobilized now!
Housing project Brunnen 183 and Umsonstladen (free shop) in Berlin are to be evicted on June 18th at 07:00 a.m.. The letters from court that announce the eviction arrived today, May 26th. Inhabitants, users and supporters of the house hereby call for support and solidarity of any kind anywhere at any time. Come to Berlin, be there, be loud, start a riot!
>From June 6th to June 21st there will be Action Weeks organized by the wba-campaign (?wir bleiben alle!? – ?we’re all gonna stay!?).
Places to sleep and infrastructure will be at hand. Those who can’t come to Berlin are invited kindly to ?get active? from now on and whereever possible!
Houses belong to those who live in them! Defend 183! Destroy the city! We’re all gonna stay!
Solidarity blog: http://brunnen183.blogsport.de
Berlin’s Police Chief and LKA 5 (Landeskriminalamt) give the following prognosis
“The theme of gentrification will also be meaningful in the year 2009. Previous actions with a high degree of mobilization highlight, that this theme and the retention and expansion of leftist open spaces (Freiräume) rank very highly in importance within the scene. It is to be taken into account, that major actions by the police against individuals and infrastructure of the leftist scene will be “responded” to by crimes against the infrastructure of both local and federal police or institutions relating to the courts. Furthermore, it is to be taken into account that the manifold actions (for example unregistered and spontaneous demonstrations) that follow such measures can result in violent confrontations.”
Thank you very much for this realistic analysis. We couldn’t have said it any better! Something is afoot in Berlin: People are taking more and more to the streets, refusing to peacefully surrender to the political fairy tale. This was demonstrated recently by the “Wir Bleiben Alle” [We're all staying] campaign, which organized a mass mobilization for self-organized open spaces on March 14th, 2009 under the motto, “united we stay” [originally in English]. 5000 loud and determined people took to the streets and combatively showed their displeasure with the police. Even better: more and more actions are piling up, and demos are becoming uncontrollable for police! This was also seen in this year’s May 1st.
The land is everybodys.
For immediate release…
In May 1996, 500 The Land is Ours activists occupied 13 acres of derelict land on the banks of the River Thames in Wandsworth, highlighting the misuse of urban land, the lack of provision of affordable housing and the deterioration of the urban environment. That action grew into far more than just a simple land rights action.
A community grew up on the site called Pure Genius!! over the 5½ months that the occupation lasted for…..
This year there will be the „We all stay! Action Weeks” again. Since the decentralized DIY concept of protest was so successfull last year we will continue to rely on it this year. An preparation group will provide an infrastructure with sleeping places, info points, website, radio, ticker etc. The rest of the program is in your hands. Think about how to organize your protest against the dominating city planning. Be creative and visible for the general public or organize yourself silently.
We want to give people an opportunity to make their frustration and rejection about announced evictions of autonomous spaces, rising rents, ever growing surveillance, about control of public spaces and of course about profit-oriented and therefore exclusionary politics from the Berlin government. But its not all about Berlin. We want to offer a stage to all emancipatory projects, collectives and campaigns that wish to inform people about themselves, about their struggle, their problems and their success. Here again: DIY! Hold workshops, start direct action!
Report from squatting festival in Lund, Sweden 16-17, May 2009
For many years in Sweden, squatting houses has been something not attempted very often, a lot because of the no-tolerance laws and practice by the Swedish state. The attempts during the last 15-20 years met heavy sentences and the interest in squatting sank to a low level. After the eviction of Ungdomshuset in Copenhagen many were inspired by the resistance and the movement that arose around the fight for a youth house, and the idea started to seem more real again. During the international squat days of action in April 2008 several houses were squatted in many Swedish cities, purposely during a limited time to make public activities.
The temporary squattings continued after the action days and in the October 2008 a house in Lund was squatted, later called “smultronstället” which lasted for about a month. It was publicly squatted and the squatters intended to live there as long as possible. As it happened the housing situation in Sweden in general was going towards an extreme level compared to the comfortable existence most people took for granted after years of social democratic rule in the supposed model society. Lund, a small town mainly based around its university, had reached a very difficult housing situation especially for young people from the area. It was even harder for them to find a flat than for students moving there from other towns. They quickly gained a big and broad support among neighbors and the people from town with their open and inviting attitude and many came by to visit. The local media also portrayed the whole thing surprisingly good. Negotiations were started with the municipality that hadn’t dared to give the eviction order yet as they were blamed for the housing politics. But after weeks of meetings and promises from the side of the politicians the squat was evicted without any notice before. The night of the eviction a big demonstration was held through the city center and shortly after, two new houses were squatted, though they were evicted the same day.
On Saturday, 9th May, at around 3 p.m. a demonstration organized by Rozbrat Collective took place, it started in front of the Opera House. Around 1,000-1,500 took part in it. The participants of the demonstration were also people from different organizations and groups such as Anarchist Federation, members of different groups of protests from Poznan neighborhoods, including those protesting against the F-16 airport, anti-eviction organizations, alternative theaters’ members, trade unionists from different unions, representatives of the Berlin autonomous communities, squatters from different cities in Poland and abroad and loads of other supporters of Rozbrat from Poznan, Poland and abroad…..MORE INFO ABOUT THE DEMONSTRATION AND ACTIONS ABROAD, PHOTOS: http://rozbrat.org/news-in-english
Soli rally with Polish squats (wednesday, 3pm)
SQUATS IN POLAND STAY! SQUATS EVERYWHERE STAY!
SQUATS IN POLAND STAY! SQUATS EVERYWHERE STAY! 6 of May (Wednesday), 3 p.m.
SOLDARITY RALLY WITH ROZBRAT AND ELBA SQUATS FROM POZNAN AND WARSAW
The Hague, in front of Polish Embassy (Alexanderstraat 25)
around 4.15am this morning around 100 commandos stormed Ravens Ait island
they arrived in 27 black zodiac inflatables
they were wearing helmets, balaclavas, and flackjackets, and carried sidearms
overhead a low flying helicopter used thermal imaging to locate the approximately 20 residents who were sleeping at the time
the commandos kicked down doors and took people outside and off the island