Last Saturday around 1.500 people participated in a demonstration in the city of Leipzig in Germany. We reported last week that the City of Leipzig banned a demonstration against the recent conviction of four anti-fascist. The demonstration, referred to as “Day X”, had been called for to take place last Saturday in Leipzig, with the mobilization of anti-fascist from the whole of Germany. The anti-fascists did not let the ban by the local government stop them, and instead a demonstration was organized under the slogan “Freedom of assembly also applies in Leipzig”.
The four anti-fascists were sentenced to several years in prison on the 31st of May, in a trial referred to as the Antifa-East trial. They were convicted of six alleged militant attacks against fascists and for forming a “criminal organization”. A strong solidarity movement has grown among anti-fascists in Germany, demanding freedom for the now convicted anti-fascists.
According to a report, the demonstration started peaceful, but eventually escalated because of the behavior of the police. The police have been accused for a blatant violation of fundamental rights, and for using disproportional measures against the participants of the demonstration. Also bourgeois politicians criticized the police’s handling of the situation, claiming that banning the demonstration escalated the situation.
The demonstrators continuously resisted the aggression from the police and according to a report threw stones, bottles and combustible materials at them.
In the evening there was reported on groups of several hundred people venting their anger against the police and the conviction. People threw stones at a police station and made barricades that they put on fire. The struggle intensified during the night. According to the police there were gatherings of “violent people” who were burning barricades and defending them against the police.
According to a report from german media around 50 police officers were injured in the struggles on the streets of Leipzig.
Many anti-fascist were arrested for participating in the registered demonstration and campaigns have been started to defend their freedom. The Right of Assembly is protected in the German Constitution, however, it is not uncommon that those who goes against the interest of the German State do not experience this right.
On Wednesday there were demonstrations against the conviction of the antifascist in several cities in Germany, as we have previously reported. Also then many participants were arrested for exercising the Right to Assembly. In some cases even people who were only passing by got detained by the German police.