(en)Police action illegal, anti-fascists won a court with city

Fri, 24 Oct 1997 06:28:10

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Free Society - P.I.A.

News: Police action illegal, anti-fascists won a court with city authorities and police

PRAGUE (Free Society - PIA ) - Participants of last years demonstration for the support of the German antifascist "Autonome Antifa Gotingen" group have successfully won a court action against the District Council for Prague 1. On October 15 Prague municipal court decided that the District Council for Prague 1 took action in violation of the law when dissolving the demonstration with the help of the police force. The Council claimed the demonstration was not announced, and proceeded to initiate its violent dissolution. The police intervention resulted in a number of disturbances amongst the demonstrators, including a few camouflaged antifascists throwing paving stones onto the police officers, some of whom were injured. Three demonstrators raised an objection to the district court, and defended themselves without a state attorney. According to the judgment of the court, the office bureaus violated the rights of the citizens as stated in the Declaration of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms, and the law of free assembly, which executes this constitutional norm. Council had decided to dissolve the demonstration primarily because the activists had failed to announce it The court action was conducted under strict security conditions, with five members of the judicial security force present, armed with shotguns. After the interrogation of a member of the district council, and the reviewing of the police video shot during the demonstration, the court acknowledged the validity of the objection by the three demonstrators. Namely that there was, according to the law, no sufficient reason to dissolve the demonstration. Ondrej Cakl, one of the three who raised the objection, had this to say to PIA: "The assembly was not announced to the District Council, but even in such circumstances, there has to be legal reason for it's dissolution. In this case there were none." The court also agreed with the objectors' claim that until the police took action, the demonstration was peaceful. Violence from the side of antifascists appeared only after the police action, which itself was illegal and unreasonable. "Not fulfilling the obligation of announcing is not a reason for dissolving the assembly. The diction of the law is clear in that," the judge, Mrs. Pechova, stated as an explanation of the judgment. An officer of the District Council today confirmed the participants' claim, stating that the Council and police had decided their course of action for the demonstration before it actually started. O. Cakl said today to PIA that he is satisfied with the judgment, and emphasized that the main point of the objection was to "point out how the office bureaus interpret the right of citizens to assembly in the case of antifa and anarchist actions. "This is not the only time that this happened. At any action taken by autonomous people, they always encounter state repression." The demonstration was organized by the Autonomie magazine on August 30, 1996, with two hundred young people attending to give support to the German antifascist group "Autonome Antifa", group "Antiimperialistic core" ("Antiimperialistische Zelle") and "Radikal". The spokesmen of the Czech Antifascist action (AFA) and the Socialist Solidarity demanded in their speeches a tougher attitude by state institutions towards fascist activity. Participants of the demonstration then marched peacefully from Betlemske to Malostranske namesti, in the center of the town. The police took action against them by blocking Naprstkova Street, and refused to let demonstrators leave. Some of the demonstrators managed to break through the police cordon, and police arrested people with the use of batons in the riots that followed. They were accused of assault of a public servant. In Gotingen, Germany, in August 1996 court action was taken against seventeen members of Autonome Antifa, who aim for the break down of neo-nazi meetings and manifestations. They were fined 3000DM for being members of a criminal organization. -pck- , 24. October '97 ------------------------ PIA is going to bring information especially on activities of Czech radical movements which see one of the reasons of the current situation of the society in existence of state authoritarian capitalistic system. We want to inform people abroad about actions of Czech anti-authoritarian, anarchist and autonomous groups and organizations and about the most blatant cases of human rights violations by the authorities.

* We are going to offer information service; when keeping the basic rules of journalism. News taken from other media will be explicitly marked with sign Monitor. * We want to make the political activities international, for many of them are impossible without effective support from abroad. Informing exactly on what is happening, informing in time is the first step towards international cooperation.We will appreciate if you use our information and we ask you as well to inform the Czech public on similar activities in your country via our agency. Your reports will be publicized in magazines which cooperate with PIA. Against Authorities....For A Free Society! http://www.geocities.com/CapitolHill/Lobby/6580 e-mail: anfocz@usa.net mail: F.S., P.O.BOX 176, 110 01 PRAGUE 01. Czech Republic

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