Rotterdam. Netherlands. One day after the housing protest in Amsterdam., where Hotel Marnix was squatted, people took the streets in Rotterdam. A report.
Originally published by Indymedia NL.
The housing protest went to the streets and as the black block advanced they were suddenly stopped by a police blockade and escorted out of the housing protest.
The housing protest in Rotterdam was severely slowed down at the bridge by the presence and violence of bored piggies.
The black block was among the other protesters. Marching forward as chants were belted by the members. The police were trailing the entire protest and began commotion in the back of the black block. In response the black block began to assemble itself and the members were brought closer together. As the inital turmoil was seemingly evaded, and the black block moved forward, the police quickly surrounded and blockaded black block.
Police cars made to carry detainees and countless police officers with riot gear were initially deployed the blockade. Dogs, drones and a car mounted with a water gun shortly followed.
Black block was essentially suspended, cutting off the back half of the protest and members were being rialed by police officers. Many protesters outside of black block sat down and chanted in support.
The house on wheels that had been leading the protest was unleashed and momentarily broke the police blockade. Many members followed the house and attempted to escape, baton hits flying in the dorection of anyone who followed.
The black block was split in half. Police began shoving the members to the other side of the bridge where the piggie-mobiles were patiently waiting. The other protesters continued to show support and the moving house was flung to the back of the protest as it crashed and bounced off of piggie-mobiles.
An empty tram halted between black block and the other protesters. The police escorted the members into the tram amidst solidarity chants coming from everywhere. The police entered the tram and formed a line in the middle. The block block members were led out of the protest as they rode the pig infested tram.
One by one each member was escorted out of the tram and searched for drugs and sharp weapons. Their ID’s and faces were taken in photo.
Many people, from the blockade to leaving the tram, were attacked, injured and detained. The police used any excuse to escalate and acted like the fascist thugs they were hired to be.
Police attacks housing protest
Yesterday, the Woonopstand (english: housing uprising)demonstration took place in Rotterdam. We picked up in advance from various sources that the police were very nervous about this demonstration. We then decided that it was necessary to set up an arrest support group in the event people would be faced with repression.
As we already mentioned in our last statement, it seems very likely that the police are doing everything they can to isolate a group, which in this case mostly represents the squatting movement, from the rest of the housing struggle protesters. The police adopt a position here where they believe they can determine for the housing struggle protesters which groups or individuals may or may not be part of the movement.
Where at the previous housing protest in Amsterdam we saw that the police used an attempted squatting action as an excuse to beat up and arrest dozens of people, in Rotterdam we see them carry out their preconceived plan shamelessly with no reason whatsoever. The intention do so was already visible with the dozens of plainclothes officers who mixed with protesters from the start of the demonstration. Notably, they often carried protest signs, put stickers on their jackets, were masked, and joined it with the slogans chanted by other protesters.
It is particularly striking that the police have indicated to the organisation in advance that they were afraid of the presence of “antifa”. It’s evident that “antifa” as a movement has nothing to do with this demonstration. The Rotterdam police force is already known for countless examples of excessive violence and racist “incidents” that have occurred in recent times. It now appears that once again, notably at the highest regions of this police force, policy is formed on the basis of a Trumpian politics of fear with “antifa” as the boogeyman. The intervention of the police yesterday therefore had not a legal but rather a political basis as such.
The first people were released late last night. At the moment, there are still a handful of people in prison and we are working with the lawyer to make sure they get the support they need. Several people were also injured, some people even had to be treated at the hospital.
Have you been a victim of police violence and do you want to take legal action? The lawyer can help you with this.
Were you arrested, but have you since been released? Please let us know using the contact details below. Have you received a settlement proposal? Do not pay this, but consult our lawyer first. Also, understand that paying a settlement proposal means acknowledging guilt.
In either case, it’s wise to write down your experiences so you don’t forget them. A possible case often takes a long time. Also, document your injuries or other matters that may be relevant. And if you have any questions about anything, you can always ask us through the details below.
Lawyer Jaantje Kramer
Arrestant (arestees) support group
Email: AG_Rotterdam [at] riseup [dot] net (PGP key: https://indymedia.nl/node/50645)