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(en) Germany, die plattform: Review: protests against police build-up (ca, de, it, pt, tr)[machine translation]

Date Tue, 14 Mar 2023 08:12:14 +0200

Two years ago, in spring 2021, a rally took place in the north of Dortmund. It was directed against the rearmament of the Dortmund police. Specifically, it was about equipping the police officers at the north station, which is notorious for racial profiling, with electric pulse weapons - so-called tasers. ---- At that time we took part in the meeting with a banner and gave a speech in which we denounced the racist violence of the police in Dortmund's poorest district, explained why crime does not fall from the sky and showed that instead of militarized districts there was self-organization in the neighborhood to create security. You can read our full speech here. Our conclusion at the time: "The upgrade of the police will hit the people hardest who are already affected by racist police controls on a daily basis."

These words leave a more than bitter aftertaste today. As was to be expected, the one-year trial was not the end of it. The tasers were finally transferred to the regular use of the Dortmund police.

Fatal Consequences

And they use the new potential for violence. Since the introduction of the Taser, they have been used again and again - often with fatal consequences. It mostly hit the homeless, drug users, people in exceptional mental situations, as well as black people and people of color. All those who are marginalized in this society anyway.

In October 2022, a homeless man died in Dorstfeld after the police used a Taser. On our website you will find our report on a small action that we carried out shortly afterwards at the scene of the crime to take a stand against police violence. Because this murder, like all the others before it, is just being clammy and secretly covered up. Justice is not to be expected.

A Taser was also used when the 16-year-old refugee Mouhamed was murdered by the police from the North Guard last summer. Here the police claimed he was used before the firearm. The investigation exposed this as a lie. Less than a second elapsed between the use of the taser and the first shot at a defenseless black youth. The introduction of the Taser cost lives immediately.

Increased awareness of police violence

The protest to stop them was largely limited to a small number of left-wing groups and was far too weak. To that end, some things have developed positively in the last two years. The work of the Justice 4 Mouhamed initiative in particular drew a lot of attention to the question of police violence and in some cases those affected were given a voice. Overall, there is a greater, more critical awareness of the everyday violence of the police in Dortmund.

In concrete terms, however, little has changed. Murdering police officers still mostly go unpunished. Racial profiling still takes place every day. And the taser armament in NRW is being expanded.

Our perspective

In our speech two years ago, we argued that only self-organization from below and mergers in neighborhood initiatives can solve the problems of a fourth and really make it a safe place. Because the police, as the armed arm of the state, has no solutions to offer other than more violence. And the state projects for the "management" of the district are primarily there to polish the image of the northern part of the city and make it more investor-friendly: gentrification and displacement of the poorest are the consequences.

Actual security arises where the state is pushed back and replaced by new, genuine and solidary relationships between people. Taking care of each other and supporting each other when needed. Building such a neighborhood is a long, rocky road. But there is no way around it. If we want a liberated society to be able to self-govern from below, then it needs germ forms of organization in companies and districts that can ultimately take over the fortunes of society. We are glad that there is now an initiative in Dortmund, Together Against Price Increases, which actually tries to take on and implement this difficult task with neighborhood meetings. Together with an independent observation of the police, such organizations can also be the basis for publicizing the arbitrariness and violence of the police and for resisting them.

So support initiatives like Justice 4 Mouhamed and the neighborhood organization of Together Against Price Increases.

For solidary organizing from below against poverty, isolation and police violence. For Fighting Neighborhoods!

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