Lille, France: Paint attacks against gentrification and evictions

On the night of 23th-24th [March] we attacked suddenly with paint the front of the Mayor’s office, the gendarmerie [military police], the formerly occupied Mangouste and the house of hip-hop. We chose these targets to oppose the ‘regeneration’ of poor neighbourhoods and the city policy that evicts the poor, to make these neighbourhoods more profitable for developers.

Le Chti d’Arras, a former event space for several years and of illegally occupied existence (in particular where concerts and other hip-hop events took place) saw itself evicted and replaced by “the house of hip-hop” or “European Centre for Urban Culture”. A good way for the Mayor to recuperate what was already being done without her, to relieve her of all that was subversively done there, and to instead make a commercial-cultural product.

In fact many practices collapse in contradiction with their logic. Whether it be occupying land, buildings and empty houses, rent strikes, housing ourselves or experimenting with new social relations, we find ourselves rapidly confronted with repression. Evidenced by the recent eviction of the Mangouste (an empty building for many years and owned by the Pasteur Institute), a squat right in the centre of Lille, very visible, open to the neighbourhood, and therefore embarrassing for the Mayor. The resources deployed for the occasion (a significant number of police forces, the area on lock-down all morning), indeed shows their desire to undermine the basis of any organisational initiative that is not subordinate. There are still several occupied spaces, notably L’insoumise (a bookstore where many discussions and film screenings take place), which is also evictable.

We do not intend to let them do so, nor expect from them any license or right. We will take what we can . We call for solidarity among all those who struggle and suffer the social and economic politics of the state and its minions.

War to this old world. ACAB.

[Translated from Lille Indymedia by Squat!net]