evel on Mon, 16 Jun 1997 12:37:00 +0200 (MET DST)

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<nettime> Eurostop: Police threaten to evict renowned squat cafe Vrankrijk (fwd)

Amsterdam. June 16, 2 am.
Just after the peace and atmosphere had 
returned to the partying Vrankrijk, scanners received messages about 
giant riot police movements. At 1h45, journalists and passers-by were 
removed from the Spuistraat, and the party-goers all went inside 
Vrankrijk. While the police removed all cars in the neighborhood, 
including those of journalists hanging around, the people in the 
squat-cafe were informed about the alarming situation outside. The 
bar closed, music and TV were shut of.

The first few people that left the cafe saw themselves confronted with
several lines of riot police, who seemd fairly tranquile. They were
fully searched for arms. Other groups that left were arrested (between
6 and 25) and taken to police HQ. Two or three city busses were
brought in, appearantly to transport arrested people to the police
station. The Spuistraat was completely surrounded by masses of police.
Police were told that Vrankrijk was to be evicted and everybody inside
arrested. Hundreds of plastic handcuffs were distributed and police
spokespeople were brought in. Suddenly, the sign came for the police
to withdraw. Within five minutes, hundreds of riot police had
disappeared, taking along their cars and busses.

Perhaps it was an attempt to frighten the people in Vrankrijk, who are
known to play a crucial role in political actions. Perhaps the police
wanted to provoke a fight, to have an excuse to arrest these people
and have them 'safely behind bars' during the euro circus. Journalists
who were present were amazed and could not believe the police

A spokesperson of Vrankrijk declared that he saw no reason why
Vrankrijk could legally be evicted. "We have not called for violent
actions, there are people living in this building and we've been
running this cafe for 15 years now."

The police rules the city, it's like a military state in Amsterdam
now. Roadblocks everywhere, literally hundreds of policecars driving
through the city, also still at 3 am. What madness is going on here?
The police have certainly frightened some people. But the anger and
frustrations over actions like these only seems to encourage and
inspire more radical actions. Who knows what will happen the next few

| Gerbrand Oudenaarden New Media Productions
| Internet support for non-profit organisations
| tel. 030-2933460, fax: 030-2965729, mobile: 06-53151921

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