Den Haag: Mayor prohibits demonstration route. Stop the criminalization of De Vloek!

This Saturday, De Vloek and its supporters will demonstrate against the planned eviciton and demolition of the social center in the Scheveningen harbor. The protesters want to march a route from the Kerkplein through the city along places such as the site of the now demolished squat the Blauwe Aanslag and the office of the Christian Democrats. Mayor of The Hague van Aartsen has banned the route of the demonstration, on the basis of fallacies and is criminalizing De Vloek.

About a month before the planned demonstration against the eviction and demolition of social center De Vloek, the city and the police were given a heads up. However, the city kept delaying its response and the official limits placed on the demonstration were not made known until Wednesday November 26. The demonstration will not be allowed to follow the planned route, and we will also not be allowed to assemble at the Kerkplein. The reason that they gave was that actions centered around De Vloek have an increased chance of disturbing the public order because people were arrested at earlier actions, such as the squatting action at the Pier. From these imposed limits, it is apparent that the mayor wants to put a definitive stop to all future demonstrations by De Vloek and their supporters.

There is actually no reason to believe that the campaign for De Vloek has caused a disturbance of the public order, let alone that proof as such exists. Nevertheless, the mayor has written off supporters of De Vloek as “disturbers of the peace” and has limited the demonstration to a static manifestation on the Koekamp or a short route from the Koekamp in the direction of Laan van NOI and back again.

“In this manner, our right to demonstrate has been so severely limited that there is nothing left of it. It is not only important to be able to express your opinion, but the location and the way you want to do that is an essential element of the right to protest,” a representative from De Vloek stated.

We do not agree with the profound limits that the mayor has imposed on us. We will take this matter to court. The lawsuit will take place tomorrow (3 Dec) in the courthouse in The Hague. Keep an eye on the website for updates.

Stop the criminalization of De Vloek! Stop curtailing our right to demonstrate!