Utrecht (Netherlands): Eviction Ubica


Saturday May 25th at 3pm, the last squatter of the Ubica was removed from the building. Since Friday evening 11pm, police and riot police were busy evicting the building on the Ganzenmarkt in Utrecht.

After nine month procedures, the higher court decided on Friday that the squatters had to leave the building by Monday. The squatters, on their side, decided not to wait until Monday. “The authorities choose the confrontation. Vloet (owner of the buildings, red.), the judge and the City have chosen this path. If that’s what they want, well they can get it”, according to a statement made by the squatters.

By attacking the City Hall and setting on fire car tires on Friday night, the squatters gave no choice to the police but to react. Fireworks were lit and police officers and police vehicles were targeted with paint. Ten people barricaded themselves in the 13th century old house, some of them were chained in lock-ons. This ensured the eviction would take such a long time.
The squatters from the Ubica are angry because according to them, the house is now back in the hands of mr Vloet (contrary to statements by City council that the house will be sold to a new owner who wants to build a hotel, red.). Squatter Jochem: “One: Vloet stated he withdraws from selling the building to the new owner, Klaassen. Two: he stated that he intends to bring his property back in the state it was twenty years ago: a burned-out ruin. We will not stand by and watch the property fall back into the hands of a criminal.”

Wim Vloet, the owner of the house is a notorious slumlord in Utrecht. He was supposed to sell the property to Willem Klaassen, who wants to establish a hotel. Jochem: “Vloet is the one that let the property dilapidate over twenty years. Vloet has ignored every non-compliance penalty from the municipality and and has never done any maintenance whatsoever to his property. Why should we now trust that he would do his best for this monumental building?”

During a meeting on Saturday, local residents reacted shocked. They are angry about the paint on the street and all the commotion, the closure of a big part of the square. “Very understandable, and we apologise for the inconvenience. I’d like to mention here that the decision to evict did not come from us. We have accelerated the process. You can also consider that without the squatters, the building would had never survived these last twenty years.” About the paint, Jochem says: “It was not aimed at the residents, their belongings nor any citizen, but to keep police away. No one has been injured, no dangerous objects such as stones were thrown, and all the paint can be washed away.”
The demonstration the squatters had announced for Saturday night has been cancelled.

Ubica http://ubica.squat.net/
Article published on Indymedia https://www.indymedia.nl/node/15954