Rotterdam: Free Anton !

He has a smiling face, his eyes are filled with sweetness and in the midst of silence, I can still hear him shouting Fuck them and their law.

He recounts how he got arrested. How he just wanted to go back to see some friends, saw cops passing. And no luck, they started following him. Abusive identity check. The arrest quickly turned into a humiliating and violent chase. He was the first victim of the heightening repression in the neighbourhood. January the 22nd two thousand and twenty. 1:12 p.m. [Read More]

Rotterdam: Illegal eviction currently at De la Reystraat

Since 15:30 today there is a big police operation at De la Reystraat in the Tweebosbuurt. One squat is threatened with illegal eviction again. You can join there to just witness the scene, it would be really supportive!
Kraaken in ze abyss!

Contact: squat-vestia [at] riseup [dot] net
https://squ.at/r/7o21
http://tweebosbuurt.noblogs.org/
OpenPGP Signature : C3E3 8AEA FB8A 58DD 5ED8 11CF 956E ADCD 4837 E212 [Read More]

Rotterdam: letter from the Tweebosbuurt

Some inhabitants wrote a public letter to call to support Anton. Note that it is based on their current understanding of the situation.

“Hello, we’re a group of inhabitants of the neighborhood of Tweebosbuurt in Rotterdam, Netherlands. We’re organizing against it’s demolition and the gentrification of the District for several months. The situation were actually in our favor, the court made a decision against the demolition. However, during the past few days, police of Rotterdam started an awful harassment campaign against the inhabitants of the neighborhood. 25 people were arrested in the past few days, 19 activists supporting the local struggle and 6 other inhabitants during “random” identity controls. A police car is driving by our street two or three time every hour, day and night, and they ask ID documents to people walking in the streets of the neighborhood. If that person “looks like an activist” or is not able to immediately provide ID documents they’re immediately locked up for several hours. Several people (at least 3) got beaten up in their cells. One of them (EU citizen) got evicted of the country after 30 hours of custody because she was walking her dog without a leach in the neighborhood. Another one is still in detention and is facing deportation in a country where he’s danger, and is not provided any medical care in detention despite several broken bones during his arrest. [Read More]

Rotterdam: Alarming situation in Tweebosbuurt

The situation in Tweebosbuurt suddenly changed.

Two days ago, one of the squat got illegally evicted and we discovered that Vestia, the company owning the buildings we squat, illegally added new documents to the court case against one of the squats in the last moment so we cannot defend from them. We also heard that someone from the neighborhood got attacked tonight in the streets with a metal pipe because he was parking his bike close to the squat that was evicted a few days ago. Hopefully he’s not hurt. The attackers ran always after a single hit. In the same time, we’re facing an awful harassment campaign by the police. A car is assigned to the neighborhood day and night, and they control everyone of us any time we walk in the neighborhood. Some inhabitants are almost locked up inside because of police harassment. Someone have been even arrested twice in two days. In addition to the 19 arrested during the eviction two days ago, 5 other people living in the neighborhood got arrested during ID controls without legal motives already. Another person is missing, probably also arrested. We don’t know for sure because police refuses to give us any information. Three of them were injured during the arrest or during custody. [Read More]

Rotterdam: Two other evictions and 19 new arrests in Tweebosbuurt

Yesterday, one apartment was evicted by the police on Tweebosbuurt. On their way back, the police stopped in front of one of the squats in the neighborhood and tried to get in. This place is protected by house peace and an ongoing legal procedure.
The inhabitants went outside to talk to the police and ask them to stop. The police refused to give the reason of their presence, and asked for everyone’s ID (some people were even still inside) without legal justifications. Two employees from Vestia were with them, laughing at the situation. Some inhabitants refused this abusive and illegal control. Somebody was arrested. They brought them at Zuidplein Police Station for a few hours, and physically forced them to give fingerprints and took pictures of their face. They got out of the police station 4 hours latter and came home safely.
We though it was going to calm down, but we were wrong. Today, we saw the neighborhood police going back and forth Tweebosstraat controlling people’s ID. One of the inhabitants rang to the door of one of the squat and got arrested almost immediately while he was walking in. Some people went downstairs immediately and asked the police the reason for this arrest. They wouldn’t say. They asked for everyone’s ID again, without any legitimate motive. People insisted to know the reason of the arrest, and they answered “You don’t have anything to do with this kind of people, go home and let us do our job”. Most likely, this was a racist statement because the person that was arrested was obviously not Dutch. They threatened that person of being “removed” of the country. [Read More]

Rotterdam: Call to occupy Tweebosbuurt!

Tweebosbuurt is a neighborhood in the Afrikaanderwijk district, which is mostly inhabited by descendants of migrants from North-Africa, and situated in the South of Rotterdam, nearby the city center. There are four blocks of small buildings surrounding public parks and gardens. This disctrict has been gentrified for years already, mostly due to the highly increasing rent in the rest of Rotterdam which is leading students and white yuppies to settle in, and then to reclaim pacification of one of the last alive neighborhood of the city.

The city council has decided to take this issue seriously. The next step for the gentrification of Afrikaanderwijk is the demolition of the totality of Tweebosbuurt. We’re speaking here about 600 houses and shops, almost 25 000m2. 535 of these are ruled by Vestia, a private social renter which is mandated by the city council of Rotterdam to make this giant “social plan” a reality. Vestia is paid 24M euros only for the eviction itself, not including the price of the demolition and reconstruction.
[Read More]

Groningen: Statement by Akerkstraat squatters to the council

Dear Councillors,

As the people who live in Akerkstraat 16a we are pleased to be able to speak at this needed debate about the housing shortage among students, mostly internationals, in Groningen. It is clear to us that this is a matter of urgency. Every year thousands of international students are lured to the city to come and study here. What should have been a wonderful time in a beautiful city turns out to be a tragedy for many of them, just as this year. There are not enough houses, especially ones that are affordable, in the city to accommodate all those students. At this moment hundreds of students are in the emergency shelter they are expected to leave at the end of this month. Most of them have not yet found alternative housing. [Read More]

Utrecht: Derelict buildings squatted out of housing shortage and protest against vacancy

Since last weekend, a group of young people have been living in the long since vacant houses at the Burgemeester Reigerstraat 48-53 in Utrecht.

The occupation is both a direct approach to a need for life – the young people are looking for housing – and a protest against the current housing policy. The action, part of a national wave, criticized Squatting and Vacancy Act from 2010 and the intention to tackle squatting even harder. “The residents are of the opinion that not squatting, but vacancy and housing shortage must be tackled”, according to a spokesman. The buildings on Burgemeester Reigerstraat have been vacant for more than five years. Owner Marcel Paping plans to demolish the four buildings and build four new buildings and retail space in their place. A parking garage is to be built under the buildings. He has the permits for his plan, except for the entrance to the basement. Many neighbours are of the opinion that a large underground car park will seriously disturb the peace and quiet in the street. Paping plans to nail up the empty buildings if the Municipality does not grant him all the permits. Half a year ago, the buildings were also squatted. Then the police went on a wrongful eviction. “Hopefully this time the police will be wise enough not to go for the owner’s trolley and go the right way”, says one of the squatters. [Read More]

Amsterdam: Oops we did again! Amstel 45 squatted.

Sunday, 22-09-19 we successfully squatted the building at Amstel 45. The owner of this building is the biggest real-estate owner of Amsterdam and an speculator. There have been buildings owned by Veldhuijzen squatted before, Amstelkade 20 (2016), Admiraal de Ruijterweg 76 (2008). Johannes Cornelis Martinus Veldhuijzen is the owner of 512 properties in Amsterdam, he has more buildings on his name than Prince Bernhard van Oranje Nassau! (see for details the Parool article mentioned below). We know the building has been empty for 2 years and currently there is a building stop, which means the owner is prohibited to work on the building any further and he also doesn’t have any plans for the building at this moment.
We are against vacancy, leaving buildings empty and left to rot, and we squat because of vacancy! During the first week of occupation, we didn’t have any contact with the owner. Wednesday the 26 of September, we received the court papers for a fast civil procedure. His story had a lot of inconsistency and no concrete plans and because of this and the new squatting law that is coming, we decided it’s a good time to fight back! We went to court on the 1st of October and now we are waiting for the verdict, the 15th of October. The owner himself did not show up in court and he still has shown no willingness to communicate with us in any way. Will keep you guys updated!
[Read More]

Groningen: Former Heijkens building squatted by students

A few days ago, a group of students occupied the former Heijkens building on Akerkstraat. The youngsters who are looking for housing are trying to raise the issue of the national housing shortage. The squatting action is part of a national campaign in the context of the nine-year squatting ban. “During this time, it was mainly squatters who had to suffer, while landowners and speculators get away with vacancy. So the ban is not a solution to the housing shortage”, according to the students’ spokesman.

Since 1 October 2010, the Squatting and Vacancy Act applies. The purpose of this law was to reduce the vacancy rate in the Netherlands. However, research commissioned by the Ministry of Security and Justice and the Ministry of the Interior shows that the effects of the vacancy policy are hardly visible. At the beginning of this year, some 96,500 m² of office space was vacant in the city of Groningen, half of which is not even for rent or sale. The vacancy rate of office buildings in the Netherlands has almost doubled. [Read More]

Amsterdam: New move from the municipality on the squatted bowling in Noord

Urban resort planning to evict a squat. The squatting community needs your help!

Urban Resort is currently making plans to evict a squat in the North of Amsterdam, called ‘the Krakers Bowlwerk’ (squatted in March 2016). The municipality who owns the building asked them to put a broedplaats (breeding grounds) in place, and Urban Resort gladly said yes to this business opportunity.

They are on a mission to clear the area and make it ready for richer tenants, a process called gentrification. Here’s the catch though: Urban Resort had a lot of ties to the squatting scene, so we will be able to stop them. They were founded by our comrades after all at the time of the squatting ban in 2005. With the aim to safeguard sub-cultural niches, that we as a community created. Niches that they are now helping to break down. [Read More]

Utrecht: Squatting during national day of action – police proceed to unlawful eviction

The national day of action against the ban on squatting was also held in Utrecht today. A group of squatters has just added the vacant building at Reactorweg 164-172 to the housing stock. Help with the occupation is welcome, so come along!

The building, owned by De Waal Beheer, has been empty for quite some time now and plans for use by the owner seem to be lacking. While the CDA and VVD in their own-initiative law are working on new legislation to protect property owners even better against squatters, this action shows that squatting is still the only effective means for people searching for housing to combat vacancy. [Read More]