Now Playing Tracks

How youth-led revolts shook elites around the world- From Athens to Cairo and Spain to Santiago, old certainties are being challenged after the Arab spring and financial crises

By: Jack Shenker ..

Quote:

The scope of her ambition echoes that found in Syntagma Square, where opposition to an EU/IMF bailout and its accompanying austerity measures has morphed into a broader critique of social injustice. “We are ordinary people, we are like you," reads the mission statement of theReal Democracy website – the online hub of the Syntagma protests – before going on to explore the alienation many Greeks feel from the organs of the state. “Without us none of this would exist, because we move the world … I am outraged. I think I can change it.

»

After 60 days of occupation, Greek police forcefully evicted the protest camp at Syntagma Square in Athens. This is the defiant reaction of the protesters.

 

Videos of the eviction here. The following is a message from real-democracy.gr:

The Square is Us and We Are Everywhere

General assembly at Syntagma Square, 6:00 o’clock

Like thieves, who fear the people’s outcry and public shame, The police forces entered the square at 4 am.

The district attorney and work crews of the Municipality of Athens invaded the square, and began a wholesale destruction and removal of tents and the infrastructure of the various work groups of the square. They then took 13 people into custody, 8 of which are now considered arrests.

We condemn the ban on communication of lawyers with those held at the police station in Omonoia. (For this reason, there is no clear picture of the number of arrestees or who they are).

Activists who were present in resistance to the annihilation of the square, saved what material they could and took videos of what was happening, scenes which make it plain that we are living under a cowardly democracy and a justice system that functions on the basis of the law of the jungle.

Let them realise the obvious truth:

The square is all of us, thousands of ordinary people who stand up to a cynical, antipopular, antidemocratic, corrupt economic and political status quo. A status quo, that in desperation, facing its own failure, is trying to save itself in any way possible.

We will not become its victims.

We do not fear, we do not submit.

We inform them that they are fooling themselves if they think that “cleaning” and making a fortress of Syntagma square, they will protect themselves. There are tens of squares now all over Athens, with their own general assemblies, hundreds of squares all over Greece. We are in every neighborhood, along with every citizen of this country.

We are the millions of society set against a handful of a corrupt and subservient minority who try to pretend they have strength by using the police, mercenaries of the power elite.

We are everywhere.

Whatever they do they cannot makes us leave. The streets and the squares, like jobs, productive structures, the wealth of this country and our rights belong to us. They are not for sale. We will continue to demand their return to the people.

We have said it before and we say it again:

We will not leave until they do.

Everyone at Syntagma Square today Saturday 30th of July at 6 p.m.

The terrorism of this dictatorial goverment, the IMF and memorandum, shall not pass.

You do not scare us. You infuriate us.

We continue the fight peacefully, with determination and creativity.

    More police violence in #Spain, evictions in eight squares #spanishrevolution #europeanrevolution ..

    Over the past days the Spanish National Police force has coordinated to evict many of the squares that continued to be occupied by the 15M movement. The squares in Palma de Mallorca, Manacor, Santa Cruz de Tenerfe, Badajoz, Castellon, Gandia and las Palmas have been emptied forcefully and cleaned up. The last one to fall was the camp in Valencia, which was evicted early in the morning, at around 5.30 am local time and without warning. Most of the camps were small and the people staying there were coordinating the information booth left in most squares, as well as other permanent activities. This made most evictions easy and pacific.

    In Santa Cruz de Tenerife (in the Canary Islands) and Palma de Mallorca (in the Balearic Islands), however, police forces displayed the same un-called for violence that is becoming a symptomatic reaction of Governments across Europe (click here and here). In Santa Cruz eyewitnesses described police actions as“something brutal, like a gale. They charged into an area where there were many minors. It was very violent, I saw how a girl was hit with a stick and she started to vomit blood”. In the end a total of twenty people had to be attended due to superficial wounds of many kinds. Around thirty people were present at the time, while police forces had more than 70 officers present. Members of the camp also denounced that the police destroyed or confiscated materials that were part of the movement’s infrastructure such as tents, furniture and computers. The regional Government on the other hand, explained its actions alleging that it was necessary to “clean” the square, and that protesters did not allow the operation to be carried out. The Government delegate in the Canary Islands, Dominica Fernandez even went as far as to state that “there has not been any moment of violence. The cleaning operation was carried out and 45 minutes were given for the campers to pick up their belongings.”

    In Palma de Mallorca the situation was very similar, with protestors sitting on the ground with hands raised in signs of peaceful resistance, while police insisted on dispersing the assemblies being carried out. Two people were arrested and 28 others were wounded, among them three police officers. According to a press release by the camp’s official web page police actions “had a pacific response on behalf of the people present at the square, including the ones attacked. Most of them sat on the floor and raised their hands. Then the police tried to disperse the collective charging against them again, aggressively telling them to leave.” This situation went on for a while and when “police officers were told to identify themselves, these responded with an aggressive stance, pointing the rubber bullet shotguns at the protesters.” When the wounded people went to the hospital to receive an official medical statement of their situation, the police forced them to identify themselves, pressuring them on their decision to press charges, according to the same web.

    An explicit video of the events can be seen here.


    The Belarusian authorities must respect the freedom of assembly of those wishing to protest peacefully. Currently, applications to organize demonstrations are routinely denied, while those that do proceed are rapidly, and sometimes violently, dispersed,
    The Belarusian authorities must stop using violence and administrative sentences to punish demonstrators and discourage future protest.
    Belarusian authorities must launch a prompt, independent investigation into allegations that protesters were beaten. It is unacceptable for police to use excessive force against peaceful demonstrators

    John Dalhuisen, Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for Europe and Central Asia.  

    The Report Says That: “In the capital Minsk and other cities, police arrested more than 250 people yesterday after several thousand gathered without speaking and clapped their hands to express disapproval at President Alexander Lukashenko’s economic policies. Most were later released, but some face short administrative sentences or fines on charges of “minor hooliganism.”

    To Tumblr, Love Pixel Union