[fse-esf] AUSTRIAN SOCIAL FORUM ( ASF ) SUPPORTS THE MOVEMENT AGAINST STUTTGART 21 AND CONDEMNS POLICE VIOLENCE
dworczak at hotmail.com
Sun Oct 3 05:18:28 CEST 2010
The Austrian Social Forum ( ASF ) declares its full support for the movement against Stuttgart 21 and condemns police violence.
" STUTTGART IS EVERYWHERE"- Long lives the international solidarity!
Hermann Dworczak ( activist in the Austrian Social Forum/ASF , 0043 / 676 / 972 31 10 )
Von: "Johannes Lauterbach" <johanneslauterbach at gmx.net>
Gesendet: 02.10.2010 21:05:41
An: WTO-INTL at LISTSERVER.CITIZEN.ORG, social-movements at lists.riseup.net, club-belemexpanded-discussion at lists.openfsm.net, "SOS WTO" <sos-wto-eu at s2bnetwork.org>, wsfic-wg2010-discussion at lists.openfsm.net
Betreff: [social-movements] Call for support - mass protest and police violence in Stuttgart / Germany - please sign
>Call for support in the struggle against Stuttgart 21 – please circulate
>we, activists against “Stuttgart 21 (S21)” in Germany are asking for
>your solidarity and support in our struggle to stop Europe's “largest
>infrastructure-project”, to protect our city and to achieve true democracy.
>Two days ago, Thursday September 30th, the escalation began: a massive
>police force - using water-canons, pepper spray and batons - pushed
>aside over 10.000 peaceful protesters, who were trying to protect their
>park and its trees with acts of civil disobedience, simply refusing to
>get out of the way. The demonstration of state-power was shocking. Over
>300 protesters were injured, some seriously, many of them
>school-children, who had been participating in a students protest-march
>officially scheduled for that day a long time in advance. Four people
>had to have eye-surgery after being hit by the water-canon, one may
>loose an eye. In the night the shredders moved in and began turning the
>beautiful old trees into sawdust in front of thousands of shocked but,
>strong and peaceful demonstrators. Yesterday, 100.000 (one hundred
>thousand) demonstrated peacefully against this act of state violence –
>the largest protest against S21 ever.
>Below we give some background-information on the project. But it is
>important to consider that this struggle is not just about a railway
>station in a German provincial-capital.
>It is about overcoming the arrogance of those in power, it is about
>peoples voices being heard, it is about real democracy. And it will not
>only affect people in Stuttgart or in Germany: if we stop Europe's
>“largest project” in the centre of one of its most conservative and
>economically powerful corners, we can change Europe from the bottom up!
>Please sign on the letter below (and attached) – asking for an end of
>police-violence, a moratorium and to let the citizens of Stuttgart
>decide – and send your signatures to
>johanneslauterbach at gmx.net and carol.bergin at gmx.net
>by Saturday 9th October.
>We will deliver the letter with the list of signatories to the local,
>regional and federal government and also to the media.
>Please, also send messages of solidarity and support to the activists –
>we will try to publish these and read them at the rallies
>Johannes Lauterbach and Carol Bergin
>The Stuttgart 21 project is advertised as part of the “Magistrale for
>Europe”, a high-speed railway line from Paris/France to
>Bratislava/Slovakia. As such, it is part of the neoliberal EU agenda,
>which places infrastructure in the service of corporate interests above
>the interests of local communities. It involves the building of an
>entirely new railway station in the centre of Stuttgart, which will be
>built deep underground as a drive-through station to replace the 19th
>century terminus. To achieve this
>a large section of the city's central park with hundreds of beautiful
>old trees will be destroyed
>one of the best working railway stations in Germany, with easy one-level
>access to all trains, will be turned into a narrow tunnel, threatening
>to become a bottle neck due to limitations in size of the tunnel and
>forcing passengers to climb up and down long stairways
>parts of the railway building – a national heritage – are being
>dismantled: this destruction has already started and roused the anger of
>tens of thousands of citizens
>the tunnel is posing a potential threat to precious mineral-water
>sources, which are located a few miles downhill
>a series of tunnels will be built into sensitive geological formations,
>threatening the stability of Stuttgart's hillside, and likely going to
>produce massive additional costs
>Estimates calculate the resulting gain in travel time at 1-2 minutes.
>But then, this project offers huge real-estate deals and
>billion-Euro-contracts for tunnel-building companies – which we now know
>to have close ties to decision-makers.
>While billions of Euros (estimated costs officially are 4.1 billion,
>critical sources estimate rather 10 billion) are lavished on this
>prestige-project, urgent improvements in the local and regional railway
>system – needed to help remove traffic from the roads to reduce
>fuel-consumption and carbon-emissions – are being neglected in the name
>of speeding up long distance-travel by a few minutes.
> From the early planning stages in the nineties, this project was
>opposed by a growing citizens movement. A faked citizens-participation
>was offered, in which the one issue not to be discussed was, if the
>project should be built at all, or if there were any alternatives.
>Demands for a referendum – backed by over 60.000 signatures (more than
>10% of Stuttgart's population) – were denied by those in power. Opinion
>polls show, that 54% of citizens are against the project (with only 35%
>in favour). There were massive demonstrations, growing in numbers every
>week. A new movement emerged: the “park-protectors” – who prepared
>themselves for non-violent action with over 2.000 people having pledged
>to chain themselves to the trees when the chainsaws move in.
>But building permissions were pushed through and this summer the
>machines started to attack the old railway building.
>The authorities however, underestimated the peoples willingness to
>resist. Immediately mass rallies with ten thousands of protesters took
>place in addition to acts of peaceful civil disobedience, blocking the
>streets for hours. Since July, people are guarding the park and the
>building site around the clock, providing early warning. And an amazing
>new culture has emerged in the centre of the city, with people holding
>meetings in the park, sharing food and talk, joining in art-performances
>and strangers having conversations in the public buses. With the state
>now using massive police force against its own citizens this struggle
>has reached a new dimension.
>article in English about S21:
>further info (in German only):
>videos from protest:
>blockades and police-action 30.09.10:
>killing trees 01.10.10 early morning:
>Demonstration 01.10.2010: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ZgogP5jCCY
>Open letter / Offener Brief
>To / an
>Angela Merkel, chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany
>Stefan Mappus, Minister-President of the federal state of Baden-Wuerttemberg
>Wolfgang Schuster, Mayor of Stuttgart
>We, active citizens, civil-society organisations and social movements
>from all over the world are deeply concerned about the recent events in
>the city of Stuttgart related to the controversies about the
>infra-structure project „Stuttgart 21“.
>We are shocked to hear that, police used water-canons, pepper-spray and
>batons against citizens engaging in peaceful acts of civil disobedience
>on 30th September, injuring hundreds of people, including many
>Germany has a reputation as a democratic country, which owes its
>existence to active citizens taking to the streets in the face of state
>oppression. We are very disturbed to hear that, in this country today
>police-force is used against its own people to implement a highly
>- the Park “Mittlerer Schlossgarten” and its trees have a special place
>in the heart of the people of Stuttgart
>- opinion polls show, that over 50% of citizens in Stuttgart and
>Baden-Wuerttemberg are opposed to this project
>- there have been increasing numbers of reports giving evidence of
>potential technical problems and uncertainties in costs, some of of
>which have even reached international media attention (see article in
>The Independent from 09th August 2010)
>- people already have been severely injured and any further enforcement
>would result in an escalation
>we call upon you
>- to stop the use of police-force,
>- to put a moratorium on the project, and
>- to let the people of Stuttgart decide
>We would highly appreciate to see Germany setting an example in peaceful
>and democratic conflict resolution, that is giving priority to the
>concerns of citizens
>Wir, aktive Bürgerinnen und Bürger, Organisationen der Zivilgesellschaft
>und soziale Bewegungen aus der ganzen Welt sind tief besorgt über die
>jüngsten Ereignisse in Stuttgart bezüglich der Kontroversen um das
>Infrastruktur-Projekt “Stuttgart 21”.
>Wir sind schockiert zu hören, daß die Polizei Wasserwerfer,
>Pfeffer-Spray und Schlagstöcke gegen Bürgerinnen und Bürger einsetzte,
>die friedlich zivilen Ungehorsam ausübten und dabei hunderte Personen
>verletzte, darunter viele Schulkinder.
>Deutschland ist im Ruf eine Demokratie zu sein, deren Dasein aktiven
>Bürgerinnen und Bürgern zu verdanken ist, die im Angesicht staatlicher
>Unterdrückung auf die Straße gingen. Wir sind sehr verstört zu erfahren,
>daß in diesem Land heute Polizeigewalt gegen die eigene Bevölkerung
>eingesetzt wird, um ein hoch umstrittenes Projekt durchzusetzen.
>In Anbetracht, dass
>- der Park „Mittlerer Schlossgarten“ und seine Bäume der Stuttgarter
>Bevölkerung ans Herz gewachsen sind
>- Meinungsumfragen zeigen, daß 54 % der Bürgerinnen und Bürger das
>- es eine zunehmende Anzahl von Berichten gibt, die auf mögliche
>technische Schwierigkeiten und Kostenunsicherheiten hinweisen, über die
>selbst in der internationalen Presse berichtet wird (s. The Independent
>vom 09. August 2010)
>- bereits viele Menschen schwer verletzt wurden und eine weitere
>Erzwingung nur zu einer Eskalation führen würde
>rufen wir Sie auf
>- den Einsatz von polizeilicher Gewalt zu beenden
>- ein Moratorium über das Projekt zu verhängen und
>- die Bevölkerung Stuttgarts selbst entscheiden zu lassen
>Wir würden es sehr begrüßen, wenn Deutschland ein Beispiel für eine
>friedliche und demokratische Konfliktlösung geben würde, bei der die
>Sorgen der Bevölkerung im Mittelpunkt stehen.
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