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(en) France, The battle starts in Nice

From Workers Solidarity Movement <wsm@newmail.net>
Date Thu, 7 Dec 2000 14:48:22 -0500 (EST)

      A - I N F O S  N E W S  S E R V I C E

>From Ainriail - the Irish Anarchist list

[A personal report from a Workers Solidarity
Movement member, these reports are posted to the
Ainriail list when first written]

      The battle starts in Nice

Mainstream press sites and the wire services are
carrying reports that battles have broken out
between the protesters in Nice and the riot
police guarding the European Summit. The British
Guardian reports that "As the leaders arrived
teargas filled the streets leading to the
Acropolis convention centre and police fought
battles with groups of protesters trying to
scale steel road barriers". Meanwhile on the
French border 'Fortress Europe' is again in
operation with the French army denying entry to
around 1,000 Italian protesters.

The European Summit in Nice is being attended by
the leaders of all the EU governments.  It aims
to agree legislation which will undermine the
rights of EU workers and create a common
European army.  It will also hand over various
powers to the WTO.

Yesterday between 60 and 80,000 people marched
in Nice against these policies with the majority
of the marchers being Trade Unionists.  Very
little media coverage was given to these mass
peaceful protests (in Britain or Ireland at
least) although considerable coverage was been
given to the summit itself. Many people will not
know these protests took place.  It appears
there were sizeable numbers of anarchists on
these demonstrations, the Euronews coverage
showed the red & black banner of the Spanish
anarcho-syndicalist CGT with large numbers
behind it.

The plan was to try and blockade the Summit
today in a similar fashion to the blockade of
the WTO in Seattle and the successful shutting
down of the World Bank/WTO in Prague. Presumably
the attempts by the riot police to prevent this
is what triggered the confrontations during
which a near by bank was set on fire.  A photo
on the BBC web page shows a section of the
demonstration being attacked with tear gas,
again several anarchist flags from the Spanish
CGT are visible.

The only coverage of the counter-summit I've
seen has been some rather sneering comments by
the Italian press.  Once again in Nice an
obedient press is demonstrating that it knows
who feeds it.  Once more we can expect to be
told the demonstrators are simply against
everything.  Once more the mass demonstrations
will be ignored and the legitimate attempts to
actually shut down the summit will be portrayed
as the actions of a mindless minority.  In part
to counteract this some 18 anarchist groups from
4 continents have been distributing a statement
in Nice in four languages of why they are there.
You can read this at

Tonight in Dublin there will be a solidarity
demonstration with those protesting in Nice,
please try and come along

    Protest at the European Union Office
      Molesworth Street, Dublin 2
    Thursday December 7th at 5 pm

>From Irelands's Workers Solidarity Movement

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