A Little Review to 24mmjournalism’s Year 2016

A lot has happened in the past year. International politics, with Donald Trump being president-elect in the United States, are shifting towards a so called post-factual approach. All over Germany the amount of hate-crimes related to the right-extremist scene rose as newspaper ZEIT reports in this article. Neo-nazis rally against refugees and riot. Barracks and buildings supposed to give shelter to people newly arriving in Germany are lit. The far-right party ‘AfD’ is able to collect votes in the first elections since being founded in 2013. Europe fortifies itself. Just off Europe’s borders desperate people from e.g. Syria needing shelter sit and wait. Erdogan keeps installing an autocracy in Turkey. Freedom of press is not granted anymore in the country shaken by an attempted coup this summer that led to mass arrests. The 24mmjournalism team covering social issues, protests and general news, documented incidents during the past year displaying anger, mischief, despair and pure hate. The following small excerpts of our work do not raise the claim of completeness at all. We tried to sort kind of chronologically.

PEGIDA Munich

PEGIDA Munich marches - neonazis hold speeches

To sum up everything that happened at the Munich local PEGIDA branch in some sentences is hardly possible. The Munich branch of the racist movement has slowly revealed to the broad public its open acceptance and friendship with Neo-nazi terrorists. All-in-all PEGIDA Munich rallies almost everyday and marches once a week. Neo-nazis now openly speaking at the microphone at the demonstrations were warmly welcomed participants during the past years.Openly positive referring to historical national-socialism is new – and finally leads in subsequence to PEGIDA Munich being undoubtely a Neo-nazi march. Some Munich newspapers have long drawn a picture of only some Neo-nazis participating and the rest being ‘normal citizens’.

Turkish Fascists

turkish-nationalists-consulate-20160716_11

With Erdogan installing an autocracy in Turkey, bombing Kurdish autonomous regions, plenty suicide bomb attacks and an attempted coup Turkish fascists held several rallies over the past year. In Munich this lead to violence several times. Also the followers of the so called Grey Wolves gathered together with other conservatives from the Turkish community after the attempted coup in Turkey.

AfD Bundesparteitag
Protests against meeting of AfD in Stuttgart
Roadblock gets sorrounded by police

As an answer to a shift in politics further to far-right antifascists mobilized to demonstrate against far-right AfD’s federal party congress in Stuttgart. More than four hundred people were arrested during the protest.

Neo-nazis riot on Mayday in Plauen, Saxonia
plauen-20160501_13
Police uses water-cannons, peppersray and teargas to push back neo-nazis attacking counter protesting citizens and police forces.

The Neo-nazi party Der III. Weg held their yearly mayday rally 2016 in the town of Plauen in Saxonia. After half of the demonstration route Neo-nazis declared there demonstration to be ended and attacked police violently. After a short riot the situation calmed down and the Neo-nazis were allowed to march back to the train-station of the small town.

NOBORDERS demonstration at Brenner
Heavy clashes at 'Over the Fortress Europe' demonstration at Brenner
Clashes erupt between activists and police.

Austria announced to reintroduce border controls at the Brenner passage to Italy one of the main routes connecting Germany to Italy. To prevent this from being built activists from Italy, Austria and Germany gathered in front of the train-station at Brenner. After lighting pyro-technics and putting on gas-masks and helmets activists started marching towards the Italian-Austrian border. Riot police prevented this. Heavy riots on the train-tracks and also highway followed.

Situation for refugees in Athens and Greece
Refugee and supporters demonstrate through Athens
3000 people participated in a demonstration through inner-city Athens on June 16th demanding a borderless world and a better overall situation for refugees in Greece. City Plaza Hotel, self-organized refugee shelter, was leading the demonstration with a banner. Protest was very peaceful.

The whole year of 2016 the horrible situation for refugees fleeing war to Europe being stuck at the Greek-Macedonian border has been a topic in media. In June 24mmjournalism travelled to Greece to document the situation for refugees living in Greece and especially in the capital of Athens. After shooting some aerial footage and a photo-reportage about City Plaza Hotel, 24mmjournalism met people living in the port of Athens, people supporting refugees, refugees living in squats in Exarchia. Together with the Reflektierter Bengel media collective 24mmjournalism witnessed the eviction of the last leftovers of the refugee camp Idomeni in Northern Greece.

Shooting spree at OEZ shopping mall in Munich
Shooting OEZ Munich
Shooting OEZ Munich

On June 23rd Ali David S. went on a shooting spree at shopping mall OEZ in Munich. Hell broke lose. Rumors about shootings and killings all over Munich were spread via social media. At OEZ special forces took on a manhunt to find the shooter that executed himself some blocks off the mall complexe. The city of Munich was in a state of shock. Chancellor Angela Merkel attended the condolence ceremony.

Violence breaks out at an AfD election party
antifa_sponti_afd_20160904_11
Chris Ares trying to pull away banners.

In September 2016 the far-right party AfD managed for the first time to become part of a state government. Members of the party met in a restaurant. Antifascists gathered to protest. Neo-nazi rapper ‘Chris Ares’ attending the elections celebrations took on the counter protestors. After trying to kick a photographer of 24mmjournalism a fight started in front of the restaurant near Munich East. After several minutes antifascists left the site seeming shocked of the violence.Colleague Anne Wild documented the incident as the photographer was attacked:

TdDE 2016 – German Unification Day in Dresden
tdde-20161003_14
Street blocked with banner.

On October 3rd the celebrations for the German Unification Day were held in Dresden. Neonazis disturbed the festivities and cussed at politicians attending. Antifascists rallied against the festivities and drew attention to situation at the European borders where thousands have drowned.

Refugee struggle protests

sendltor-refugeestrike__12160910

Desperate refugees from across the country gathered in Munich to hold a protest camp. After being ignored by politicians they did a protest march to the center of migration and refugees in Nuremberg. As a reaction was still missing they decided to return to the protest camp and hold a hunger strike. The strike was evicted on November. Some managed to flee police and climb on trees. Special police arrested the activists in the tree.

Safe Aleppo

SOS-Aleppo demonstration in front of Reichstag in Berlin

The crimes against humanity have come to a sad new point in the end of 2016. Bombed and killed civilians could be seen in media across the world. To support those people and ask the german government to intervene people all over German gathered. In front of the german federal government’s building -Reichstag- in Berlin a rally was held under the motto ‘Safe Aleppo’

BerlinAttack
Armed police guard world’s largest christmas market in Nurnberg
Policemen stand at entrance of Hauptmarkt in Nuremberg equipped with machine pistol.

Even though not being in Berlin the terror attack probably conducted by an ISIS follower in the capital of Germany left 24mmjournalism shocked. All over Germany security forces were strengthened after the attacks. 24mmjournalism witnessed this in the end of December in Nuremberg. At the Christmas market police forces set up street blocks with cars and were stationed around the Hauptmarkt with machine pistols.

This little look back on the year past of course only reflects the year for the 24mmjournalism team. In hope our followers savor our work.

Michi
 -24mmjournalism administrator

Advertisements

Inside City Plaza Hotel – self-organized refugee shelter

Approximately three months ago activists squatted an old business hotel in downtown Athens. The hotel is located on Achanon Street 76 near the center of the poor district of Victoria. As activists reported, especially at night the area around the hotel is a rough neighborhood. Several news agencies, websites and newspapers have been reporting about the squat e.g. VICE News. The house is filled with photo- and video-journalist almost everyday, at least when we were visiting.

Continue reading Inside City Plaza Hotel – self-organized refugee shelter

Day Seven in Athens – little retrospective view on the past week

After not ‘travel-blogging’ for five days I am back with a normal daily report.

Evicted camp Ekostation
On one of the tents refugees left a message.

The past days have been quite full of beautiful impressions, as well as shocking ones and fun moments. As we were driving to Thessaloniki we got the message from on-site that police started evicting the leftovers of self-established and -organized refugee camp ‘Ekostation’. We arrived on site when the eviction had basically been finished by police. We whitnessed the empty camp. Colleagues from reflektierter-bengel.de and me released a multimedia article: Camp Eviction at Macedonian Border

As we returned to Athens we had a small problem with a place to sleep. Chaotic as usual we forgot to book an AirBnB, but found one last shot. Back in Exarchia I have been told by an activist I interviewed on his work here (Article will follow)  that the district had faced several raids by police against squads during the past days. The people we had food with in their squad are also very worried about what police will do in the next days. We will follow the situation and will try to catch police as they are raiding.

Attacks by Anarchists out of Polytechniko University
Policeman standing in front of burning busses.

On Wednesday night anarchists conducted a militant action against two busses in front of the occupied university. As we were around the corner and could here the tear-gas grenades being fired and Molotow-cocktails being thrown we dropped by and took some pictures. My gallery from that night can be found here:

 Police in fight with anarchists at Polytechniko

Yesterday colleagues and I first visited City Plaza Hotel to hand out at the bar there and talk to some staff of their media team. We want to interview either refugee or supporter on the situation in the hotel right now. This will follow today hopefully. The City Plaza Hotel was holding a demonstration in the afternoon (Article following – four pictures below).

At night we hung out a little at Exarchia Square always checking if there were maybe once again fights between anarchists and police.

One thing I have to say after seven days in the wonderful city of Athens, you never know where the day leads. Planning does hardly ever work.

Stay tuned for a lot more to come -even though I am flying home tommorow.

 

Police in fight with anarchists at Polytechniko

Anarchists attacked police and busses out of Polytechniko university with stones and molotow cocktails. Two buses were burning as we arrived on site. Teargas was fired into the occupied university. Fights went on until late at night.

Camp Eviction at Macedonian Border

After Macedonia closed down it’s borders for migrants to pass the situation for people searching asylum in northern Europe worsened a lot. The camp of Idomeni developed. Tragic pictures from Idomeni and the border made it to international media. On May 24th the Greek government started an operation relocating people from Idomeni to camps run by the government of Greece. People left the camp before the eviction was complete.

Smaller camps in the area

Refugees that made it to escape before the eviction process started set up new smaller camps in the surrounding area. One at an empty gas-station ‘Ekostation’ right off the highway housing approximately 1000 people according to activists on site. People from the camps kept trying to cross the border.

‘I have been to Macedonia seven times at least’ – refugee at BP camp
BP_camp_20160613_1
BP camp at night. Food is served.

Journalists were warmly invited even though the situation for migrants is aweful. They feel stuck, want to leave the country and always live in fear of an eviction. Still they invited colleagues and me to have food with them after the sun had set – it’s ramadan. Whilst having dinner with them they told some small pieces of their stories. Nationalities are very various. Syrians trying to escape war, as well as Algerians trying to escape an … 

‘oppressive government that wants you to work as much as you can, but not earn anything’ – asylum seeker from Algeria.

Even the little amount of food they have was shared. As we were on site the camp of Ekostation was already evicted and there were rumors about an eviction of BP and Hotel Ara.

BP_camp_20160613_2
BP camp after sunset.

Some said that they want to try another time to cross in the night. As we left the camp they were listening to music from their homecountries and discussing, joking and dancing. Still the mood was full of tension and insecurities

Eviction of Ekostation

The biggest of the three left camps was evicted on Monday June 13th. We arrived late to document any of the eviction. Police blocked the highway near Thessaloniki. We were told to take a rural road to pass by Ekostation. Over some fields we managed to reach the camp. A devastating picture of the camp was left.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The only people that were in the camp as we stopped by were refugees from a military camp, where the condtions are supposed to be very aweful, collecting leftovers before the Greek governments sends bulldozers to clean the shut down gas-station. On June 14th supporters from MedicinesSansFrontiers were collecting blankets. Other supporters were tearing down Ekokitchen that fed refugees in the camp.

Eviction of Hotel Ara- and BP-camp under exclusion of media

In the morning of June 14th the other two camps located near the highway were cleared. Police blocked media from reaching the camps. Supporters on site reported on the phone:

Everything is full of police. They arrived in the morning and are putting people into busses. We are asked to leave.’

After the highway was opened again we managed to stop at BP station. Working only with the phone, we captured the bulldozers entering the forest and riot police resting.

At Hotel Hara on the other side of the highway, there were still some people left.

Few People left at Hotel Hara:

After only few minutes of being on site at BP station and stepping out of the car civil police officers approached us. We were asked to leave and our ID’s were checked. Police and the Greek government are trying everything to prevent any media besides a government-close TV station to report about the situation.

All in all it’s unsure what happens to people. According to supporter on site they are brought to Vassiliki a camp located near Thessaloniki. Taking pictures in this government-run camp is not possible we have been told. Forgotten In Idomeni reported about neonazis on site:

What will happen now seems very unsure. On Wednesday government said it will start on working on the registration process and checking single asylum seeker on the right to stay. This might take up to months. Even though the camps are evicted and the government tries to make the place look there have been no people searching shelter at all, worldwide attention has to be kept on what happens to the people that were on site.

#whatsinmybag for Greece

Header-picture taken by Channoh Peepovicz while covering ‘Over the fortress’ demonstration at Brenner some weeks ago.


This blog and my Facebook page have been inactive for almost one month now. So I am back with a classy #whatsinmybag type of posts.

The reason I have been offline for several weeks are  other work and the preparation for this trip.
Now I will be back with more regular posts the upcoming week starting from Friday. Our flight to Athens via Rome departs in Munich at around 6:30 PM. In the middle of the night my colleagues and I will arrive at the capital of Greece and join a film-team already shooting a documentary about ‘City Plaza Hotel – Refugee Accommodation and Solidarity Space’ in Athens. The team has been shooting the past two weeks. I will gather some drone-shots and maybe catch some pro- and counter-refugee demonstrations over the weekend with them.
From June 13th on my colleagues and I will be on our own and we will cover the overall situation for refugees stuck in Athens and Greece at the moment.
So the following stuff is in my bag:

View this post on Instagram

#whatsinmybag I am leaving for a trip to Greece on friday and I am packing stuff right now. So this is what I am taking. 1 DJI Chargers 2 DJI PhantomII Remote 3 DJI PhantomII Battery 4 DJI Phantom II 5 GoPro Hero3 Black 6 Waterproof Housing for GoPro Hero3 Black 7 ’Chestie’ mount for GoPro 8 Dräger X-plore 5500 9 Gill Gloves 10 Atomos Ninja Star Batterycharger 11 Strap for all types of gear 12 Atomos Ninja Star 13 Rode VideomicPro 14 LPE-6 and Atomos Ninja Star Battery 15 Canon 6D with mounted Sigma Art 24mm f1.4 16 Canon 135mm f2.0 L 17 Nikkormat FTN in black with mounted Nikkor 85mm f1.8 18 Nikkor 105mm f2.5 19 Helmet 20 Mini Tripod for Interviews 21 Hähnel Cube charging station 22 Emergency Kit – containing Bandaids, NaCl, Gloves, etc. 23 Ilford B+W films – Delta 100 + 400 24 Leatherman Wave 25 Lighter 26 Waterproof Cardholder: SD + Micros-SD + CFast Cards 27 Headphones 28 MacBook Air 29 Sony PSZH1TB HDD 30 UMTS WiFi Stick 31 PressCredentials and ID 32 Passport 33 Protection and Polarization Filters 34 Pen 35 Moleskin Notebook ‚Reporter‘ 36 Newswear Foul Weather vest I might be taking my modified PhantomI – instead of the Phantom II on the picture – that is still touring with a colleague and I will take my Nikkor 24mm f2.8 that is with another colleague and not on the picture. All Nikkor lenses also fit onto my 6D with an adapter ring. Some charging cables André also missing on The Picture. #whatisinmybag #whatsinmybag #photojournalism #videojournalism #canon #nikon #gasmask #gopro #dji #phantom #apple #illford #atomos #newswear #nikkormatftn #nikkor #nikkormat #reportage #athens #greece #refugee #refugees

A post shared by 24mmjournalism (@24mmjournalism) on

  1. DJI Chargers
  2. DJI PhantomII Remote
  3. DJI PhantomII Battery
  4. DJI Phantom II
  5. GoPro Hero3 Black
  6. Waterproof Housing for GoPro Hero3 Black
  7. Chestie’ mount for GoPro
  8. Dräger X-plore 5500
  9. Gill Gloves
  10. Atomos Ninja Star Batterycharger
  11. Draeger-X-plore-5500
  12. Atomos Ninja Star
  13. Rode VideomicPro
  14. LPE-6 and Atomos Ninja Star Battery
  15. Canon 6D with mounted Sigma Art 24mm f1.4
  16. Canon 135mm f2.0 L
  17. Nikkormat FTN in black with mounted Nikkor 85mm f1.8
  18. Nikkor 105mm f2.5
  19. Helmet
  20. Mini Tripod for Interviews
  21. Hähnel Cube charging station
  22. Emergency Kit – containing Bandaids, NaCl, Gloves, etc.
  23. Ilford B+W films – Delta 100 + 400
  24. Leatherman Wave
  25. Lighter
  26. Waterproof Cardholder: SD + Micros-SD + CFast Cards
  27. Headphones
  28. MacBook Air
  29. Sony PSZH1TB HDD
  30. UMTS WiFi Stick
  31. PressCredentials and ID
  32. Passport
  33. Protection and Polarization Filters
  34. Pen
  35. Moleskin Notebook ‚Reporter‘
  36. Newswear Foul Weather vest

I might be taking my modified PhantomI – instead of the Phantom II on the picture – that is still touring with a colleague of mine and my Nikkor 24mm f2.8 is with another colleague that is travelling with me.

For any questions regarding my equipment, ‘travel tips’ for Greece or anything else you can contact me via the form below, drop me an e-mail or write me a message on Threema – my ID: ZXZH5MPV