Amsterdam: New squat on the Singel

20170319_Singel_356_AmsterdamThis afternoon a building was squatted at Singel 356 in Amsterdam. The canal house, which has monument status, was last sold in 2014 to a British hedge fund banker based in Switzerland. Prior to the sale, the building was uninhabited for a number of years, with planning permits denied, and only minor works carried out by a now bankrupt construction firm. Since acquiring the property in 2014, the current owner has continued the trend of his predecessor: leaving the building vacant.

Like the majority of these typical Amsterdam canal houses, the property has been deemed monumental. Generally, this status is given to structures and buildings of significance in particular to preserve an area’s historic architectural value. Future plans for this property remain unclear, and we strongly believe that unique, significant monumental buildings such as this should not be left empty to deteriorate over time – particularly when the reasons behind this likely involve some means of speculation. As a group we intend to look after this property, which its current wealthy owner appears to be unconcerned with.

The continuing housing crisis in Amsterdam shows no sign of improvement anytime soon. The accommodation shortage we are witnessing is driven by surging prices in both real estate and rental accommodation. At the same time, increasing numbers of social housing properties are being switched into the free sector or even sold, with very few being added to the social sector. Understandably, waiting lists for social housing have ballooned in recent years – 15-20 years on average across the city. [Read More]

Athens (Greece): List of needs of Themistokleous 58 squat

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After more than a year of existence, Themistokleous 58 anarchist squat and housing project for people with and without papers in Exarchia, downtown Athens, still needs some very practical solidarity to stay functional. Here goes our current list of needs.

Food supplies: Oil (olive oil/corn oil), rice, pasta, tomato sauce, beans, lentils, chick peas, eggs, potatoes, canned milk, dog-food. [Read More]

Athens: Hands off Themistokleous 58 Squat!

Hands_off_Themistokleous_58HANDS OFF THE 58!

The purpose of this text is to clarify the position of our squat regarding some incidents that took place over the last months in Exarchia, and defend our physical and political integrity by all means necessary.

We refer to the practices of gossiping, slandering and violative behavior against the structure and the actions of the 58, practices that we consider equal as snitching, regardless of whether or not the person using them each time is expecting something in return from the persecuting authorities. The outcome is the same, in the sense that they are singling out specific individuals as a target, they attempt to strip our project of its political characteristics, and prepare the ground for the direct or indirect repression that lurks in the corner.

We also refer to physical assaults that took place the last 2 months, like bullying attempts at our front door, a group ambush against squatters of the 58 at Dervenion street (Exarchia), and even threats and attacks against us with the use of sharp/lethal objects (like a knife and an awl) only a few meters away from the 58. [Read More]

Athens: Eviction report

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Following the raids on squats and the evictions (previously on s!n), some 60 people have been moved to other squats, after spending hours in police station and rejecting the offer to be transferred to one of the camps nearby Athens. Many experienced life in camps before, and they choose no to go back but rather to rely on alternative accommodation, mostly in squats. City Plaza, as well as other squats, took them in, and volunteers and activists found emergency shelter for everyone else.
[Read More]

Prague: Don’t ruin Klinika, don’t ruin our city!

klinikaIf nothing changes, Klinika will likely get evicted in summer. We can turn the tide – come on 9th of April on demonstration for Klinika!

Klinika still vibrates from such relations, meetings and events that find themselves trampled upon and exiled out of sight in the rest of the city. An abandoned, decaying home, collectively rebuild, open for sharing of our experiences and knowledge, alternative culture and the organization of radical politics, both of which don’t back away before the brownish authoritarian swoosh around us.
However, we don’t want to advertise here, neither amaze with some overview of our events or convince you of our own diligence. Instead, we want to convey the experiences we have gained over the last two years. Prague needs its Klinika and the people, determined to fill it with life – here we have them plenty.
On every road there were many obstacles and many slips, never was it easy for the self-organized social center to exist. If it comes to its end though, it won’t be so much due to the naivete or impossibility of our goals, rather due to the diligence of people, whose deep-seated beliefs went unmoved by Klinika. The state institutions – Office for Representation of Government in Property Affairs (UZSVM) and the Railway Transport Administration (SŽDC), our current owner – finally came up together with a plan how to bury the social center. [Read More]

Amsterdam: Future of the Torensluis. The city wants an exclusive Canal District

torensluisbrugLast night the Dagelijks Bestuur of the Central city district made a decision about the future of the Torensluis. The district wants to begin renovations soon, after which neighborhood groups will be abloe to sign a contract with them. As soon as the necessary permits have been obtained (which will probably be around May or June), the district will no longer tolerate us in the space.

The negotiations about a joint plan for the future use of the space were reaching their final stage in November 2016 when our negotiating partners, Stadsdorp 7 and Brug9buurt abruptly left the talks. It turned out that they did not want to sign our jointly devised plan because they wanted to submit their own proposal.

Contrary to the proposal of our former negotiating partners, the Spinhuis Collective wanted to keep the space open for use by a range of groups. We therefore saw the necessity of submitting our own proposal, in which we articulated our vision about public space in the city, specifically in the Torensluis. We therefore went in search of other socially engaged projects for possible collaborations. Neighborhood center D’Oude Stadt and Stichting Het Gespuis, both of whom have been forced to find a new space because of the commercialization of the city center, indicated their willingness to work with us in the future. [Read More]

Bure (France): Protests and attacks against the CIGEO nuclear disposal project

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On Saturday, February 19, in Bure, in the north-east of France, a demo took place in the forest to support the occupation there and then on to the research lab of the planned nuclear waste disposal facility CIGEO. In the process, the ANDRA (French nuclear waste disposal agency) was pushed back more or less symbolically to a section of its illegally constructed wall in the forest. A small action report.

More than 700 people took part in Bure’s February 2017 events, which in the late afternoon resulted in violent protests and massive attacks against the site of the nuclear waste disposal agency ANDRA. [Read More]

London: Belgravia squatters occupy third mansion

How_tall_is_a_tall_building_Buckingham_GateSquatting collective the Autonomous Nation of Anarchist Libertarians (ANAL) continue to underline exactly how much high-end housing is lying empty while homeless people sleep on the rain-soaked concrete, having spent last night moving into another mansion.
The group wrote: “Facing a police enforced eviction at 4 Grovesnor Gardens, ANAL have decided to relocate AS CLOSE TO THE QUEENS BEDROOM as possible…. Overlooking Wellington barracks, introducing our new squat, 19 Buckingham Gate.”
19 Buckingham Gate, which is just yards away from Buckingham Palace’s gardens, is the third property in a row to have been taken on by the collective, which took over 108 Easton Square in January (where they fended off fascist attackers) and 4 Grosvenor Gardens in February.
The overall site, 18-19 Buckingham Gate, is currently being given a slightly gaudy-looking makeover by developer Simpson Haugh and Partners, with a view to turning it into 14 luxury apartments for the sort of people who can afford to pay (if it’s anything like the neighbours’ place) £2.5 million a pop for the chance to get a good view of the royal behind.
The developer lists the owner as “private,” however if it’s not “18-19 Buckingham Gate Investment Ltd” then coincidences abound.
If ANAL keep up their current rate of mansion occupations they could have collectively squatted in properties worth well over £100m by the end of the year. [Read More]

Zaandam: Swimming pool resquatted

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Today (20/2/17) we liberated an old Swimming Pool! The pool has been squatted before for 10 years after being empty for 7 years, in 2012 it got evicted to build a “Paramedical centre”. This never got build because the owner [J. H. Bakker] went partly bankrupt in 2014, its been empty since then. More pictures below. Source
[Read More]

Koper (Slovenia): Public call to DUTB to dialogue with the collective U.P. INDE

IndeThe Creative Platform Inde Collective is issuing a public call to DUTB (the so called: bad bank) to start a dialogue with regard to making arrangements to remove asbestos from the former factory Inde. We reiterate that the spaces which are in use by UPI have already been cleaned long ago and are in fact asbetos-free. We expect a response from DUTB so that in agreement with the cleaning contractors a temporary access to our premises during the clean-up will be arranged. There are several entrances to the UPI premises and we are sure it is possible to provide safe access to at least one of them. Also, the building which UPI uses is not covered with asbestos roofing.
We are willing to show the premises to licensed contractors to convince them that the cleaning of the area that we occupy is not necessary. We have also prepared proposals on how to facilitate access without hindering the clean-up. [Read More]

London: ANAL Belgravia squatters fight off fascist thugs

ANAL_Belgravia_squattersBelgravia squatters the Autonomous Nation of Anarchist Libertarians (ANAL) report that they fought off an attack on the 28th from heavies wearing fascist-linked masks, who seem to have been trying to get them out of the mansion belonging to Russian billionaire Andrey Goncharenko that they squatted on Wednesday.
At the time of writing they are asking for more support to head down to 102 Eaton Square to provide solidarity and support for the occupiers. In a series of notes from their Twitter account, they said:
[The] fascists [have been] fought/scared off. Police liaised and content. We would still appreciate numbers here to display that we will resist … They smashed windows while children were in a peaceful occupation wearing fascist face-scarfs. [The] mansion [is] being secured from the inside after attack by fascists. Children [have been] moved upstairs. No reports of injuries.
ANAL are working to turn the Belgravia squat, in the heart of one of London’s poshest areas, into a homeless shelter for the cold weather. 25 people have been housed so far and there are plans to hold movie nights and other events at the venue. Goncharenko’s representatives, MCA Shipping Ltd, are seeking a possession order and a hearing is scheduled for January 31st. [Read More]

UK: Bristol Council and Camelot on back foot as property guardians fight for rights

Rat_infestationBristol Council’s decision to dive into the property guardianship game seems to be coming a cropper as several “guardians” have launched legal and direct action challenges demanding something be done about rat-infested and dangerous tenancies in its buildings.
Having closed public services across the city, the council has found itself flush with empty commercial and office properties, which it decided to make a few pennies on by jumping into bed with Camelot property management in 2013. The firm, along with another company Ad Hoc, now rents out much of its portfolio.

Camelot specialises in the gray-area rentals market of property guardianship, getting hard-up people needing a home to fork out anything up to £500 a month, plus deposit of £500-600, to stay in empty non-residential properties with few rights and eviction at a month’s notice. The firm has repeatedly been condemned as trying on dodgy practices, including initially only offering three weeks’ notice (breaching minimum guidelines) and using “pseudo-legal gibberish” to intimidate people they want out. [Read More]