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Berlin: Preliminary conclusions by autonomists on May Day: Biggest riot in 10 years!

Berlin. The “Central Committee of the Autonomists”, which does not exist, has drawn a preliminary conclusion after yesterday’s clashes in the Neukölln district.

Originally published by Kontrapolis. Translated by Riot Turtle.

The Central Committee of Berlin autonomists* summarizes May Day evening and draws a preliminary conclusion.

The revolutionary May Day demonstration attracted many more people as expected to Hermannplatz. In the end, more than 20,000 people wanted to march through Neukölln and Kreuzberg together. After the cops first compressed the demo to then complain about distances between people, they attacked the anarchist and the interkiezionale block totally out of the blue and separated both blocks (with thousands of other people) from the rest of the demo. In addition, they claimed that especially here people were not wearing masks – which, given the exemplary masking in the blocks, is really the last thing to complain about. The demonstration was de-escalatively planned and was supposed to be a safe place for all people, but it no longer could be after the attacks of the cops. Subsequently, the situation escalated “for a short time” as police chief Slowik accurately stated. In the process, the cops completely lost control and had to retreat from Sonnenallee again and again in fear. For several hours they did not get real access to the neighborhood but instead experienced the most intense May Day riots in the last 10 years. The strategy of the police did not work out at all, the new head of operations had hundreds of cops waiting in Kreuzberg at so-called “Hamburg grids” and light masts. In addition, there were incompetent and overtaxed riot squads from Baden-Würtemberg, Saxony-Anhalt and North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW). We hope that they will not forget their trip to Berlin that fast.

Already at the start of the demonstration there was police violence and brutal attacks by cops at the Neukölln Arcarden. The number of injured demonstrators is in the high double figures. In addition, some people were arrested, presumably just over 100. Compared to recent years, however, the balance looks much better, because it was possible to prevent the cops from making arrests by attacking them. Among the 20,000 demonstrators were just under 1,000 autonomists on “duty”.

We wish all people who were injured by the cops a speedy recovery. In addition, an unknown number of people are currently sitting in custody cells. It remains to be seen whether some of them are also threatened with pre-trial imprisonment or similar. We call for solidarity with them. You are not alone!

As long as racist police violence continues, as long as the rent madness drives us onto the streets, as long as leftist free spaces like Potse or Rigaer 94 are to be evicted, we will take our rage to the streets. This was not the last bang!

An incomplete chronicle of events:

6 p.m. – About 20,000 people gather at Hermannplatz for the revolutionary May Day demonstration. The blocks line up. An elderly resident heats up the masses from the balcony.

7 p.m. – The demonstration starts with a one-hour delay. Again and again the cops slow down the demo, compress the demo, and at the same time demand distances. Speeches and music are played on the loudspeaker trucks, the demo is very mixed and everyone is masked. Exemplary. The cops are hardly visible at the edge of the demo.

8:20 p.m. – At the Neukölln Akkarden, the cops escalate completely for no reason just before the anarchist Block. Almost half of the demo, including the Expropriation Block and the Interkiezionale Block, are accused of violating the mask requirement. Where the cops usually come rocking into a demo because everyone is masked, they now see un-masked people where everyone is wearing a mask. Coming from the airport road, they fight their way into the demo.

Translation of first tweet (at the top): “This situation was the trigger for the current escalation. #b0105” – Translation of the second tweet (below): “Dissolving the demo at the Karl-Marx-Strasse construction site because of the lack of minimum distances, of course. Where are the people supposed to go here? And how should they leave. Absolute escalation strategy and police in a beating mood #b0105”

08:30 p.m. – A few people start tearing apart the construction site in Fuldastraße in order to be able to keep marching. Shortly after, the cops attack them, first bottles and stones fly back, barricades are built for protection.

09:00 p.m. – One street further on, there is tension with the cops, who continue to hold half of the demo captive. A hail stones, bottles and laths, first barricades are set on fire.

Translation of tweet above: “Police have to retreat. Panic in their eyes. Wooden slats and other things are flying from all sides. #b0105”

9:20 p.m. – The cops from Baden-Würtemberg and Saxony-Anhalt are having a hard time regaining control. One van has to take to its heels. Barricades are burning on both sides of Sonnenallee, one of them covers almost the entire street and reminds a bit of the fires in the Schanze district (Hamburg) during G20. The first cops try to get in, but are chased away under a hail of bottles.

Translation of tweet above: “Escalation on Sonnenallee and in the entire neighborhood. Burning barricades, stones thrown, bottles thrown. Police are considering whether to use water cannons. #r1mb #b0105”

09:30 p.m. – More and more cops come from all directions and slowly get the intersection back under control. Therefore, it goes off further up towards Hermannplatz and in the neighboring streets.

09:45 p.m. – The streets are still crowded. Barricades are burning on Panierstrasse and Weserstrasse. The helicopter is still flying over Neukölln and thousands of people are on the move.

10:00 p.m. – The curfew comes into effect, slowly the cops get the situation under control. The bridges to Kreuzberg 36 are blocked with several police line, there are only grids waiting anyway, and at Oranienplatz – the actual end point of the demo – two dozens of van crews and lighting police trucks.

10:30 p. m. There are still sporadic attacks on vans and cop squads. A small rave takes place in Hasenheide. However, the tide has turned in favor of the cops again.

11:00 p. m. From a backyard on Kottbusser Damm suddenly come masses of rockets and firecrackers. The Baden Württemberg BFE does not dare to enter. Berlin is not Freiburg.

00:00 a. m. May Day is over.

for all journalists who already want to print this cheerfully: There is no central committee of autonomists. Who knows if the autonomists still exist at all.

happened at 01.05.2021

Translation of the tweet above: “It was a huge and powerful demo, according to first estimations more than 20 000 people, massive participation in the neighborhood, at the end resistance against the cops.
Thanks go out to Migrantifa & Co. for the organization. Yalla class struggle!
#b0105 #1May”

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