January 25th, 26th and 27th 2010: trial of the revolt that set the detention centre of Vincennes on fire. Action Week, January 16th to 24th 2010.
The revolt, which led to the fire that destroyed the largest prison for foreigners in France, is a concrete and historical response to the existence of detention centres and to the whole of the policy of control of the migratory flows.
On January 25th, 26th and 27th, ten persons will be tried for this revolt by the Tribunal de Grande Instance of Paris (a court which tries misdemeanours).
Our solidarity has to be at the height of the stake: the acquittal of the accused and beyond that, freedom of movement and installation.
The largest detention centre in France burnt on June 22nd 2008. From June 2008 to June 2009, some ten former detainees have been arrested and imprisoned – most of them for nearly one year – in preventive jail. They are charged with “damage”, “voluntary destruction of the buildings of the Vincennes administrative detention centre”, and/or “aggression in band against a police officer, without causing an incapacity of work for more than eight days”.
Movements of protest of the locked up sans-papiers have taken place ceaselessly during the six months before the fire. Hunger strikes, beginnings of fires, refusing to be counted, and individual or collective oppositions followed each other during this period. Outside, demonstrations and actions exposed the very existence of these centres and support the revolts.
On June 21st 2008, Salem Souli died in his room after he had asked in vain for medical care. The next day the detainees organized a march in his memory, which was violently repressed. A collective revolt followed and the detention centre was reduced to ashes.
A trial for the example
To prevent this type of revolt from spreading, the State must strike hard, it has to find culprits. Ten persons were arrested to serve as examples. We do not care whether they are “culprit” or “innocent”. By the punishment of these persons, the State wishes to make disappear revolts, denials of submission, and acts of resistance from the part of those who are, or will be in the future, between the walls of these centres. The Vincennes revolt is not isolated. Wherever are detention centres, revolts will spring up, fires will start, flights, hunger strikes, mutinies, and destructions will take place. It has been so in France (centres were burnt in Nantes, Bordeaux, and Toulouse), and in many European countries (Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Great Britain) or in countries to which border control is outsourced such as Turkey and Libya.
The fire at the Vincennes detention centre is not only a symbol: as an immediate consequence of the disappearance of its capacity for 280 people, rounding up and deportations greatly decreased in the Paris region during the following period. Concretely, arrests were avoided by the thousands. This act of the detainees has put out of order for a while the deportation machine.
ACQUIT ALL THE ACCUSED
FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT AND INSTALLATION
CLOSE THE DETENTION CENTRES
NO PAPERS AT ALL
ACTION WEEK JANUARY 16TH TO 24TH 2010
info from http://www.wombles.org.uk