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V Berlíně vyhořel dům odpůrců G8, ti podezírají policii ze žhářství

2007-05-30, 21:40:00 • Squatting
The right to live (in democratic Germany) – G8 and a fire in Berlin

In the early morning hours of yesterday, May 28th, the attic and top floors of a housing-project in Rigaer Strasse, Berlin Friedrichshain burned out. What was first a cause of fright and, temporarily, worry about people known to me possibly being still in the building as it was burning, now appears to turn out as potentially linked to the G8-meeting taking place in Berlin.

The house is one of four housing-projects in the street. After an agreement with the owner, the inhabitants pay a low rent. These days it was host to many people who´d travelled to Berlin to voice opposition in the days of the G8 meeting here in Berlin.

Almost the entire street was awake as yesterday morning, a bank-holiday in Germany, a brigade of fire-engines moved in. The blaze was huge, at times the flames reached a heigth of two storeys. The conduct of the fire-brigades appeared odd, that of the police soon after doubtlessly unlawful. Tenants of the house appealed to the fire-men, who spent an unuasally long time inactive before the house, to do something, receiving smiles as replies. As outside action, a single hose was finally used from the tall ladder. Everyone watching was puzzled by this hose being held uninterrupted on the center of the L-shaped corner house´s roof, meanwhile the flames proceeded both down- and sidewards, threatning the attached buildings. A second hose was brought to use at a late point, but alone for the end of one wing, the other wing, bordering on another housing-project, was left to burn for a length of time inapproriate in fire-fight.
People spent a long time not knowing whether everyone had been able to exit the building. The certainty came, nobody was hurt, save for shock and loss of property.

An incident with a group of right-wing men, who celebrated the fire, and who were thus chased away by some of the tenants, was ended by the police, who held the tenants at gun-point.

The fire was brought under control and extinguished. Immediately from this point the police began carrying out personal belongings of the tenants, thus heavily injuring German and European laws, as such a conduct demands a search-warrant, which was not presented. The police barred the building with fences, prohibiting access. During the following night, however, it was left to the tenants, still not being allowed back into their house,the doors of which were broken in the course of fire-fighting, to guard it from the opposite side of the road, taking shifts in heavily rainy weather.

Talking with them there I learned more about how the fire actually broke out. Everyone agrees that the fire started in an usually unused room that was normally locked behing a metal door, belonging to the large attic. An acquaintance of mine from New Zealand slept in that attic. She woke to shouted fire-alerts. The witnessing tenants all agree, that these shouts were coming from several staircases simultaneously, BEFORE anyone would see or smell smoke or fire, and were given by men not known to the house. The men were described as casually dressed, but clearly distinguished from the usual scene that frequented the house. Suspicion is hard amongst the tenants and regular visitors, that these man were in fact police.

With no proof as yet for their aligations, the tenants of the housing-project remark, that the presence of G8-opponants was known to the police, and that whether it was arson (and in case yes, sanctioned endangering of human life) or not, the opportunity was swiftly used by the police to illegally confiscate private property, and thus welcome to the police.

Every single right of these people in this matter is pissed on.

As a former, and to the authorities with certainty equally welcome consequence, there´s good reason to fear the fire being used as an excuse to end all four housing-project in the Rigaer Street.

So far media-coverage in Germany is scant.

další foto a info v němčině zde: ..:. ger.anarchopedia.org :.

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[1] Požár v Berlíně: český překlad (01.06.2007, 16:06:09)