Resumee Actiondays fuerth in English

Moon 06.10.2003 00:44

From 9.11.2003 to 11.14. 2003 there where actiondays against Lager in Fürth and elsewhere. Here is a first resumee made by the local preparation group and translated by some heroicindy translator. Despite of cold and rain about 400 participants created a loud and imaginative protest camp against the deportation camp in Fuerth. A website with pictures and a summary of the organisers:

* September 11th - 14th 2003 Action days against the camp in Fuerth The action days are over - the camp still exists. The time of refurbishment and summary has begun. What conclusions do we draw? What questions do occur? Have the actiondays affect anything? And if, what? Will it go on? How will it go on? Many questions? But first a try of a chronological summary...

The emergence

The idea of the actiondays against deportation-camps was born in January. At short notice Fuerth was discussed to be the place of this years noborder camp. But it turned out that the circle around the preparation group of the Land-in-Sicht Camp last year was against Nuremberg/Fuerth: the authorative formation or the expected repression in Bavaria was too hard. The focusing on the cooperation with refugees and the deportation camp of Fuerth, as well as possible points about the migration regime which could have been discussed would be too restricted and little lively. A point was the colaboration with refugees and their organisations. Was it an European reflex, in this case to prefer to stay within the autonomous world? It played an important role, a role which others would describe as rassistic in a structural way, which led to heavy disputes in Cologne. But because many people were interested in a strong anti-rassistic movement those serious contextual differences were postponed and Collogne was chosen as a compromise between the former Jena-noborder camp and the Land-In-Sicht - preparation groups. There was a conference "A n t I r a s s i s m u s ausbuchstabiert" (anti-rassism spelled out), which should serve as a preparation before the anti-rassistic noborder camp in which those differences should be resolved or discussed. Then it was clear that those differences have been left in the air irreconcilable. Collogne only brought the clearance of the contextual point. Certainly this was the important fact, that the people of Land-In-Sicht were completely absent in Fuerth.

The decision to have the action days

Now that the camp in Fuerth still exists after the decision for having the noborder camp in Collogne, and as the resistance against deportation camps was obviously and continuously strong, the preparation group in Nuremberg together with the refugee organisations such as The Voice, Karawane für die Rechte der Flüchtlinge und MigrantInnen and soon many other groups which are put together with the campagne against deportation, prisons, camps (3A) to an organisation of the actiondays against the camp in Fuerth and the camp-regime in general, decided to set a sign to put an end to this camp, as well as to avoid other camps, exactly on the 1st anniversary of the deportation camp in Fuerth. The idea was clear to pick out different aspects of the migration-regime worldwide in connection to the neoliberal globalisation as a theme from this point of view.


The plattform for the preparation was the meetings with campagne 3A. First it wasn't clear, if there should be actiondays with a camp or only actiondays with a mediation for places one could sleep. The preparation group in Nuremberg was quite little considering the expenditure and therefore there was the fear, the persons involved could be taken up by the organisation and to no longer have time for contextual preparations. A fear which, how it turned out was unfounded to the preparation group of Nuremberg and Fuerth. From the beginning, there also was an nation-wide preparation, which finally could reconcile this lack. The combination of the preparation was more than fertile from the beginning, although it wasn't easy. The decision was taken to have a camp. Some working groups were formed, which took over the organisation work. There was discussions about a women/lesbian and women/lesbian/tansgender area. A group within the preparation group spoke critical of it argumenting, that it would be a border again, and genders would only be constructs which actually wouldn't exist. The answers referred to reality, depressive conditions which really exist as well as the right of self-determination and definition of oppressed social groups.The question for definition arose: What exactly are borders? Which ones do we fight against? Well, there was no veto against a women/lesbian/tansgender area, most of the groups spoke for it and with this big acceptance there was a big participation of women/lesbians in the preparation. A fact which had a really positive affect on the camp as well as the actiondays in both athmosphe and context.

Frassanito, Collogne

Without doubt the preparation of the actiondays profited from the visit of really many people of the preparation of the noborder camp in Frassanito, Apulia, South Italy. Connectios were established and contextual reliances to the resistance worldwide against the migration and camp regime were created which was shown by the invitation of a person to Fuerth who was involved as a speaker in the discussion "how is your liberation bound up with mine" Maurizio.

Collogne had a direct effect on Fuerth. The authorities made the farmer to abrogate the lawn on which first the camp should have taken place, refering to the alledged criminal offenses. The splitting of the anti-rassistic scene which led to two different camps in Jena and Hamburg in 2002 was confirmed in context. It turned out, that the speculations about the fact, repression could be less in Collogne than in Bavaria was a fallacy: the camp there was evicted the day before last, hundreds of participants got preliminary investigations because of breach of public peace, grievous boldily harm and violation against the assembly law.

The question for space

Well, after the site was abrogated two and a half days before the actiondays should start the authorities began to understand, that it would be better to give us a site, than to risk days of chaos which would be uncontrollable for them, as the mobilisation has already been in good progress and it wasn't to turn back anymore, and nobody from the preparation group wanted that either. And so it happend, that the city of Fuerth invested some efforts to finally find a site for the camp to take place. Another surprise was the behaviour of the local police, who first announced a severe procedure, what's really unusual for the Bavarian police. Different groups of the preparation team in Nuremberg/Fuerth which is now known as "Aktionsbündnis für offene Grenzen und Bewegungsfreiheit" (action alliance for open borders and freedom of movement) obtained licences for various events, allies and demonstrations and led negotiations with the Ordnungsamt and the police independently.

The camp

Four days before the actiondays should start, the tenancy agreement was signed. Nonetheless and especially because of the centricity, it was possible to get organised a very good infrastructure, what cost a lot of phantasy, flexibility and nerves among the organisers. During this phase the women/lesbian organisation from Nuremberg-Fuerth was a loadbearing support for the camp. Without them it wouldn't have been possible this way and the actiondays wouldn't have been so good, as they finally were. But first the Bavarian Minister of the Interior Beckstein became a topic: One year after the opening of the deportation camp in Fuerth and at the same place where the opening took place he invited to a press conference, to display the very positive annual balance of the camp from his point of view. This happened on Wednesday, September 9th 2003 before the beginning of the actiondays, which brought the actiondays press-group to flap: Quickly it was mobilised an own press conference, two hours before Becksteins press conference: sucessfully, none of Becksteins comments stayed without an account from an opposing point of view in the media which reported about it. In "Nürnberger Nachrichten" one of the newspapers with the biggest radiation in Germany reported on page three and also "Süddeutsche Zeitung" had an article in great detail about it. The fact that Beckstein describes the submersion, or the illegalisation of 42 people which is nearly the half of the people who were admitted by now, was also at least expounded the problems of it by the civic press.

Mobilisation of refugees

Refugee organisations like The Voice Refugee Forum, the refugee-initiative in Brandenburg and the Karawane für die Rechte der Flüchtlinge und MigrantInnen felt the actiondays being the main-point of the year and began early to mobilise. They wrote a call which was included in the mutual call for action. Busses were organised by the preparation-crew, to pick up the refugees. With the help of the rassistic special-law "Residenzpflicht" (residence law) authorities tried to block or avoid mobilisation. A bus full of refugees from Saalfeld and the area around was completely taken to the police station, the refugees got complaints. Nontheless about 150 to 200 refugees made it to the camp during the days. It was still Thursday noon when a mini-caravan was organised which came to refugees-homes in Nuremberg and Fuerth by bus, to invite more refugees to the opening ally?

The actiondays

Political context - there were two actiondays worldwide at the same time against the WTO-summit in Cancún. - On September 21st parliament elections in Bavaria. - The humenrights award in Nuremberg on September 14th. The actiondays began with rain. But that didn't hinder the opening ally which took place on Thursday evening after the Aufbau of the camp at the deportation camp in Hafenstraße. The declarants had just won their proceedings which allowed to go directly infront of the deportation camp. The opening ally was loud, colourful, fanciful, the greeting at the fence was successful. There were volelleyball matches across the camp-fence and a new olympic discipline was presented: defencing. More:, Aktionstage, Dokumentation (a detailed overview of the actions).

The police behaved moderate except one time, when several stones of the sidewalk were moved during the new olympic dicipline fence digging, which made them pretty nervous. The opening plenum at the evening presented the various working groups, infrastructure and the planned programme of the actiondays. But Friday began with better weather and the "blue surpriser" for the Federal Employment Office, which got visitors all of a sudden and proudly presented "exploitation without an end". There were maifold actions on Friday. An ally at the Federal Office for Migration, an open hearing in house of the workers union Fürth, an action of the women/lesbian group in Fuerth and later again in Nuremberg, an action at the election stands of the competing parties, at the evening there was the panel-discussion "how is your liberation bound up with mine". The discussion was not like the organisators imagined it to be, it turned out, that the questioning offered a broad field of topics which could be discussed, because there are a very different views on the expression liberation. For example the abolishment of the residence law would be a step to liberation to underpriviledged refugees, or for women/lesbians who made the present refugee- exile and other organisations think heavily simply in asking again and again: "how is your liberation bound up with mine?". It became clear that this topic can't be discussed fully at one single evening. There also were some problems in understanding between Maurizio and the refugees in Germany, because the status of refugees in Italy is different: All are seen as migrants, and the discussion there has reached a more abstract level, which emanates from an internationalistic position, but not only emanates from the subjective situation of the regarding group. Maurizio then said, that we should not only concentrate on the fact where we stood, but what we wanted to reach. However the discussion was very interesting and constructive and is to be continued. Saturday was designed for blue&silver action in the inner city of Nuremberg, as well as a demonstration-track to the deportation camp. Some took "defencing" very seriously, so that finally there was a hole in the fence. Saturday was closed by concert and party. The party was very frolic, what resulted in a complaint because of noise pollution. Unexpectedly Sunday became an actionday against residence law: The bus of refugees from Sallfeld/Jena, which was already stopped by the police for a while as they wanted to go to Fuerth, again got in a police-control in Hof and the concerned refugees were held at the police station for 4 hours: at the same time there were the humenrights awards in Nuremberg a city which adorns itself with the title city of humenrights due to its history as a city of the Reichsparteitage. The awards were given to a Pakistani and an Indian humenrights activists. In the audience Minister of the Interior Schily and the Bavarian prime minister Stoiber. As their role in migration politics is well known and the antagonism is pretty provocative, women/lesbians and later other activists appeared to point out rassistic control and to picked it to out as a central theme to not only care for humenrights in a distance of 5000 kilometers but also in 5 kilometers. During this action there happened rassistic control of two The Voice activist within a range of vision and earshot of the event, what made the guests of the event wonder and feel alienation. Mayor of Nuremberg Maly promissed to support the refugees who were stopped in Hof. In a talk with activists he also said, that he liked the actiondays and that he would consider the deportation camp as a "perverse facility". Well, he obviously called the police in Hof, but expectedly without much success. But this way the participants of the actiondays got the possibility to tell to the audience of the humenrights event about the info of the controls in Hof as well as the telephone number of the police station there, because the Indian award winner supported them to speak. The persons in charge of this event disagreed with that? Afternoon, while the camp was dismantled there was another incident: Ca. 20 drunken right-wing hools wanted to cross the camp on their way to a soccer-match to provok. Quickly the dismantling campist@s forced them to turn back. After that the police accompanied them to the football match. This however led to some agitation and a stronger nightwatch was organised because some feared the hools to come back. But, the night was calm and the dismantling of the camp on Monday happened without further incidents.


Direct public effect: Well, the deportation camp still exists. But the camp helped to make the topic public again. The actions at the Federal Office for Migration and infront of the Federal Employment Office the public had to notice the bounds to the camp-regime and both institutions were presented as another tools for the separation policy of capitals. Actions were manifold und fanciful, which led to positive articles in the press as well as sympathy in civic parts and groups of the political spectrum. The action at the humenrights awards brought the invitation to the round table of Nuremberg. What this may bring is unsure. People in Fuerth didn't really care about the actiondays. There were a few citicens which followed the demonstration on Saturday, but others went shopping.

Interior effect

Without doubt the actiondays had a possitive effect on the anti-rassistic movement: Various political approaches, like women/lesbian organisations and refugee-organistions were combined; in the penal-discussion it was possible not to fully discuss constructively but to begin a discussion which is to be continued in other extra-meetings the antagonisms which made migrants and German activists and refugee-activists clash in Collogne. Pure migration organisations and represents were a little underrepresented in Fuerth, which hopefully was not because of the fact, that deportation camps doesn't offer a most negative possible option for them. We still hope, that the conflict in Collogne won't lead to some kind of silence between migrants and refugees. The broad participation of refugees at the camp in Fuerth as well as the obvious commitment of women/lesbians brought communication and implicitness of eating, living, discussing, demonstrating and party together to a level that wasn't reached at no camp before. Many feared the existance of an separated women/lesbian as well as a women/lesbian/transgender area would create new borders and could lead to splits. But it turned out that the fear was unfounded. At the contrary: in comparison to other camps this time the women/lesbian area was very big and very visible at a central place. Respect grew, which had a positive effect on the camp-atmosphere in general. So the actiondays in Fuerth were a success for the development of antirassistic perspectives in connection with and as a part of a "multitude" against neoliberal globalisation. As there were actiondays at the same time in Cancún/Mexico and anywhere else in the world to protest against the WTO summit it was easy to create such references. Lets go to Paris?


Despite some chaos everything worked fine. A negative fact was, that the circle of people continuasly involved in preparations was quite small (15-20 people). That meant that nearly everybody had to visit several working groups. For them it led to burnout-syndroms before and during camp-preparations. There was hardly time left for the organisators to do contextual preparation. This could be balanced by the arrived groups. Negative effects especially at the demonstration. As there was no working group which could have organised the demonstration meant that the biggest part of the demonstrations was unscripted, except some speeches, sound and the organisation of a loudspeaker-van. That made the demonstration more lively, what's positive. We learned that past demonstrations were often over-organised and gave no space for creativity. On the other hand nobody thought about how participants should make their way back to the camp which was 6 kilometers far. As some participants broke a hole in the fence at the deportation camp, which made the police using peppergas the situation went awkward. A spontaneous demonstration was organised to get the way back well. During that march there were some assaults of the police and detentions of 6 persons, who were supposed to have committed crimes like mumming which the police said to have filmed. Also the successful moderation on the loutspeaker-van was mostly unscripted. An activist übernahm the speaking more or less spontanouasly, what a luck. But there were mistakes as well: Founding on the problems in communication participants weren't refered to the rigid behaviour of the Bavarian police concerning mumming, or the filming because of it. A default, which led to some detentions and controlls later. But except that everything worked fine. We have to point out the topic center for sexual violence, sexual assaults and incidents, which came into existance during the last camps and even in Fuerth their existance turned out to be necesarry and right. In the past there have been developed criteria, which turned out to be right and sustainable for the dealing with sexual violence as well as sexistic assaults and behaviour. This may be because of the competence of the participating persons, however. The Nachbereitung surely will bring another summary of this working group. Surprising was the behaviour of the authorities. After Collogne many feared, that the Bavarians could try to top the repression of Collogne - Far from it. The police for Bavarian circumstances behave very moderate and sticked to the bargains, or their terms. There were not more assistic controls than usual, what's a significant for the Bavarian everyday rassism, because there were some rassistic controlls. Different to Collogne police wasn't present infront of the camp all the time, no standing in line at the demonstration, participants could move freely in Fuerth. An important fact was, that authorities wouldn't risk pictures and articles about refugees and migrants beaten by the police during the humenrights days in Nuremberg, which could have spoilt the reputation of the city of humenrights and especially the award winners. That's also an economic factor concerning torism. The rassistic controlls of the busses of refugees far away from Nuremberg and the attempt of mayor Maly to intervene the police in Hof make us suggest this? The negative aspect is: it was stolen a lot. For example someone stole a digital camera from a person of indymedia Poland. That's really unfair, because such things are very expensive in Poland?

A reason for the successful course of the actiondays in view ofthe organisators was the cooperation and spontaneity of many visitors on the camp, as well as the phantasy and the commitment of many people for example the organisation of the meals in the kitchen. Worse were the unpopular protection shifts, especially during the demonstration on Saturday and at 6 a.m?.

More actiondays?

If there will be further actiondays against deportation camps is completely unclear, or not discussed yet. They were the first actiondays of that kind, at least in Germany. There are deportation camps enough? Each camp is a camp too much! Freedom of movement is everybody's right, we are here and we will fight? What else? Due to the rassistic controls about 25 refugees will get fines because of violation of the resicence law. There will be a separate appeal for funds. The political strategy has to be discussed. What's clear is, there will be costs, therefore the donation account. : Förderverein für die Rechte der Flüchtlinge und MigrantInnen. Account number. 3501817, bank code 76060561 at Acredobank eG Nürnberg, subject index Residenzpflicht.

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