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#Berlin, #Syndikat: The neighbourhood after the eviction – angry, shocked, but we must carry on

Berlin. Neukölln. Report from the neighborhood meeting on August 16.

Originally published by Syndikat Bleibt.

Up to 70 people – mostly from the Schillerkiez – gathered in the Prachttomate community garden on Sunday to talk about the eviction of the Syndikat and their own experiences during the days of police occupation.

“I am shocked that such things could happen under this Senate.”

At the beginning, everyone was given the opportunity to talk about their own experiences of the past days. Many of the statements were very emotional and touching. “Shocked”, “dismayed” and “angry” were the most frequent descriptions, the police action in this form was criticized and rejected throughout. Many reported situations in which police forces behaved arrogantly, intimidating and aggressive towards them.

The media coverage, the general behaviour of the red-red-green senate and individual politicians following the eviction were also repeatedly criticised. Several times, for example, a statement by the deputy district mayor Falko Liecke was mentioned, who explicitly does not see the syndicate as part of neighbourhood infrastructure, but rather as a pure “extremist retreat”, which makes it clear “that the man has absolutely no idea about the neighbourhood”.

“Every time I hear screaming outside, I want to get dressed and get out. I don’t want to leave anyone alone with this police.”

The police’s continuous, massive patrols of Weisestraße and the entire Schillerkiez, the repeated arrests and dismissals in the days after the eviction were also widely criticized. The same applies to the securities, who since the eviction have been staying in an apartment above the Syndikat, but also often in groups on the street, and who have already repeatedly attracted attention through degrading, sexist and homophobic comments towards Neighbours.

“We can’t leave it like this, we must move on.”

But positive experiences were also repeatedly expressed during this time. For example, that many neighbours have the feeling that they have moved closer together due to the occupation as a neighbourhood and that especially in the days after the occupation there was a lot of exchange on the streets and in the houses. Many expressed the wish to further develop this connection and also not to leave the eviction just like that.

Out of this motivated atmosphere, 8 (!) working groups were spontaneously formed, which exchanged ideas on various topics, some of which already developed concrete ideas and networked within these groups for further work. The aim was, for example, a political, legal and medial analysis of the eviction and the police operation. One group was concerned with how the view of the neighbourhood could be more widely communicated to the media and the public, another with how the lost space for neighbourly exchange could be creatively replaced. Other topics included how to deal with the securities in Weisestraße and the still excessive police presence in the neighbourhood, or the spontaneously created but ever more solidifying daily corner in front of the Syndikat.

In addition to further meetings agreed upon within the working groups, it was decided to meet again in 2 weeks, on August 30th, for a large neighborhood meeting to discuss the results so far. Of course all people who could not be present at the 1st meeting are welcome.

Schillerkiez stays in solidarity! – Syndikat lives!

All italic sentences are original quotations.

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