Demonstration against Bavarian ‘Integration Law’ in Munich

On Saturday October 22nd more than 1800 people gathered in Munich to rally against the so called ‘Integration law’ that has been drafted by the Bavarian conservative party CSU and will worsen the situation for refugees. The participants of the demonstration were a potpourri of labor unions, parties and political groups. After smoke grenades were launched and paint bombs were thrown Munich police forces violently tried to split the mass of demonstrators injuring more then fifty people according to paramedics on site.

Non-citizen’s participate in rally fighting for their rights

Protest against New German Integrationlaw in Munich - Police Violence Errupts
Refugee Struggle block.
After non-citizen’s organizing themselves as Refugee Struggle for Freedom held a protest camp and –march to Nuremberg during the past two months, the group participated in the demonstration on Saturday. Several times sit-ins and choreographies were performed.

Violence erupts after smoke grenades and paint bombs

Protest against New German Integrationlaw in Munich - Police Violence Errupts
Paint on police helmet.
At Sendlinger Tor antifascist activists according to reports pulled a banner above their heads, launched smoke grenades and paint bombs. Police forces on site tried to split the rally and separate the demonstration. According to news reports six people were arrested.

Pictures taken by colleague Robert Andreasch during escalation:

Paramedics on site told 24mmjournalism after the demonstration that they had to treat more then fifty people with injuries. The types of injuries varied: At least 35 times the paramedics treated irritations due to pepper spray, 2 possibly broken hands, 2 head injuries and some minor lesions. This is the highest number of hurt people on a rally in Munich for at least one year. The paramedics’ statement can be found on their website: http://actionmedic089.jimdo.com/aktuelles

Paint attack performed on SPD Munich headquarter?

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Entrance to SPD headquarter.
Passing by the german social-democratic parties’ headquarter one could notice neon-pink, black and purple color splashes across the buildings glass facade. It seems like activists conducted a paint attack on Munich SPD‘s headquarter. One can suspect that the reason for this attack might be the participation of the SPD in the rally even though the party agreed on the draft of the Integration Law.

After the rally ended riot police forces went into the mass of demonstrators listening to speeches on Odeonsplatz several times causing chaos and confrontation. To support activists incarcerated some demonstrators held a spontaneous rally in front of the Munich police department’s headquarter. Also here riot police forces violently arrested at least one person. All of this is a new level of escalation during a labor unions’ demonstration in Munich.

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Last-minute cancelled PEGIDA causes chaos in Munich

PEGIDA announced the break of not marching is over last week as they gathered again after months of inactivity. The following week – Monday the 25th – the group wanted to start their rally at Karlsplatz, Stachus and “have a walk” through the city. Just half an hour before the rally was supposed to begin the Facebook page announced:

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PEGIDA Munich cancelled last-minute.

“PEGIDA Munich cancels the event today because the space assigned by the city is unsuitable under aspects of security. The distance to violent counter protestors is not given according to the responsible person at PEGIDA Munich.”

PEGIDA Munich post neglected by participants

The message of PEGIDA being cancelled seemed not to reach the participants. Everything and everybody was there: The group’s van, the organizers and the participants. Counter-protestors that were the reason for the event being canceled were sitting and standing where PEGIDA was supposed to hold their rally. Munich police department did not separate the groups and was only carrying away fences that are usually used to separate two politically opposing groups. The situation then escalated. Members of the racist movement started insulting counter protestors. One person was holding up a printed picture of a colleague with his address on the back. Chaos broke out when to young PEGIDA participants got into the counter-protestors. Police arrested one person of the antifascist counter-protestors with force. Riot-police was on-site soon. This did not help the situation. PEGIDA participants, known for violence such as hooligan Petra K. were roaming around and at least verbally attacking bystanders. Police officers trying to separate the two groups had problems identifying members of the racist group. So repetitively PEGIDA participants were standing in the middle of counter-protestors causing chaos on Karlsplatz, Stachus. After one hour of chaos, the group was led to the subway station and a day of chaos due to the last-minute cancelling ended. After all it can be concluded that there had to be other reasons for PEGIDA to cancel the march then the “missing distance to counter protest” as the group showed no fear to get close to counter-protestors.

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