On December 12th neonazis wanted to march through the alternative neighborhood of Leipzig Connewitz. The city of Leipzig denied the desired route. Instead the neonazis were moved a little more north into the Südvorstadt. All in all the neonazi route was 575m long. Antifacist activists announced to “Keep Connewitz red!”.
Just before the far right demonstration started marching a group of approximately 40 left activists tried to block the route. Saxonian police forces removed the road block. Only minutes later violent clashes between police forces and left activists broke out some blocks away from the neonazi marching route. Police tried to block a road leading to the neonazi route. Stones were flying just seconds later. Police fired first huge amount of tear gas – this basically continued for the whole day.
Unbelievable was the police violence yesterday. After the first clashes police ran into the mass of left activists and beat up a person until he fainted and was laying on the floor. As he laid there fainted a riot police officer kneed on his back and handcuffed him with cable ties. As colleagues and I witnessed the situation we asked police officers to call an ambulance – the harsh answer was: “We take care of this – mind your own business!”. My colleague then dialed the emergency hotline and ordered an ambulance. While he was doing that riot police officers tried to push us away. As the beaten up person was laying on the floor with epileptic seizures still in cable ties my colleague rushed through and gave first aid until the ambulance arrived.
Violent beatings by police officers also on peaceful anti-nazi demonstrators continued the whole day. Police write in their report about 69 hurt officers – how many activists were hurt remains unclear.
In an unbelievable mass riot police forces started firing tear gas from the first violent riots on. Some of the officers were even launching the tear gas at face value. Police officers themselves were coughing the whole day – since they did not wear gas masks. How many of police officers were hurt by their own tear gas also remains unclear.
All in all the neonazis marched their route – with the road trying to be blocked twice – police violence and riots erupted just two blocks down the road. Rocks were flying, tear gas was launched, glas was brocken and water cannons were fired – this all also on peaceful demonstrators.
The tactic by the Saxonian police to calm down the riots can not be concluded
My impressions from #le1212: