Occupied social centers in Argentina

From December we began to see a new form of political intervention, after the cacerolazos are born the assemblies, soon the interbarrial of assemblies, and now the phenomenon of the “assemblies okupas”. In the heat of economic and political crisis the search of collective solutions is urgent . Little by little the necessity was growing to create our own spaces and to solve the serious problem of the house.

The housing problem has been born next to the development of the cities. Today this problem has reached unthinkable levels. This is why the popular organizations have taken the initiative for the occupations, reclaiming inhabitable spaces in disuse. Although this is a recurrent practice in some of the cities of the country, today we consider the occupation as a structural project, to develop a political cultur and to guarantee the right to the ceiling, raising a radical questioning of private property. The idea is to recover spaces and put them at the service of the community. In these spaces cultural experiences are developed alternative to the State and the private Institutions.

In Buenos Aires, with the growth of the assemblies iinterbarrial, the opportunity has grown to fortify this project. In these last three weeks they took more than fifteen places. From that day in March that the neighbors of Villa Urquiza said “Corto, you don’t know us” and recovered the public space in which the Corto supermarket chain tried to construct a parking lot, until today, the occupations folllowed one another. the assemblies need physical spaces to develop activities and projects and in all the districts there are abandoned spaces, rubbish dumps, rat holes. Always there is a lawyer at hand to help with legal questions. The rest is subject to collective decision.. When within a few hours (sometimes minutes) of the occupation, the police arrive and request to speak with the person in charge, the answer of twenty, thirty or fifty members of an assembly-okupas is invariable: “we are all people in charge”.

the support which the assemblies offered in the attempts at evictions that took place during the week demonstrated that collectively they are prepared to defend the places which they won for people with housing problems, as they did with the occupied factories

Occupation photos with Spanish texts

David Christian <dckomatlcom [dot] net [at] mindspring [dot] com>