Report from The Demonstrations in Genoa – 07/2001

Angelo Aiden, member CC of the Israeli Communist Forum, participated in the demonstrations and in the various discussions orgnized in Genoa by the Anti-Globalization movement.

Here are parts of reports which were sent by him directly from Genoa.

The Italian governament is using all possible instruments and means to produce tension and increase it in Genova and around Genova.

Genoa is rapidly becoming a fortress, increasing the barriers and restricting demonstrators' access to many zones and from many zones.

The City workers have been busy since the day before yesterday erecting street barricades under police surveilance. The police have been placed in the the red-yellow areas and other areas to overview, control and behave againt the dimonstrators accordingly to the policy, commands and the prescriptsions of the Italian governament.

They increase tension in the City with a prefabricated "unabomber"-style attack : the day before yesterday, a package-bomb was sent to the local police station of Santo Fruttuoso, badly injuring the policeman on duty.After this they decided to change the tactic. So they made occurring in random places around the town ( one the day before yesterday and 3 yesterday ) "bomb attacs" without injuries. The Genoa Social Forum has condemned this act, but has at the same time also taken a stance against the terror strategy that the authorities (perhaps the secret services too ) are using to criminalise and weaken the cohesion of the movement.

In the afternoon after the supposed bomb alarm, a lorry- door was blown up. During the same afternoon, that area around Carlini Stadium, where 300 activists are currently lodging, was searched due to a bomb threat. A small incendiary device was found inside a suitcase, laying in front of the stadium.

This same morning, several "Tute Bianche" members were apprehended by policemen on their way out of a shop where they were buying plexiglass as protection material. The intention of police forces was to confiscate the materials. They did not succeeed, but they took one member to the police station.

The member was denied the right to a lawyer, and his comrades have contacted one for him. Unfortunately the lawyer didn' t manage to trace the member, as the police had taken him away through a secondary door. The police then invented a story of stolen plexiglass and of a denunciation against the "Tute Bianche" from the owner of the shop.

This story was used as a pretext for a raid of the Carlini stadium. The obvious lie was dismantled by simple receipts obtained from the owner of the shop.

Altercations and controls are taking place in different towns across Italy. In Torino 20 policemen have raided the squats Askatasuna and Ascova. In Bologna and in Rome, houses of various activists have been searched. In Milan, as well as in Rome, people have been arrested and searched under the pretext of their supposedly possessing drugs, among other reasons.

The situation is tense also at the swiss-italian border, where a group of activist-cyclists on their way to Genoa were denied entrance. After the cyclists' several repeated attempts to cross in an activist train, they were violently kicked off the train. 4 people have been arrested. And this is also a drop of water in a sea.

In response to these violations, the group of activist-cyclists has occupied an empty house by the police station and border demonstrators have also occupied the highway.

Other States are cooperating with the governament of Italy. For exemple : Holland. Today Oronto Douglas, well known advocate of the Nigerian activist Ken Saro Wiwa ( murdered by the multinatinals of petrol like "AGIP" against the rights of Ogoni people ), was denied by the "nice" Holland autorities to partecipate in the initiative of the "Genova Social Forum" ANTI-G7-SUMMIT today. I will feel dizzy if you will force me to describe the Holland reasons.

We had a week of presentations of the problems in the world. The cause of these problems is the parassitical greed of the imperialistic forces.

Some of the groups that participate in the GSF organization belive that it is possible to convince the g7 to take decisions for the best of the world, but most of the people understand that a better world is possible only thrue fight for socialism. They have understans the meening of the bourgeoisie.

So the discussions brougt united agreements between the several movements about the slogans and political meanings of the demonstrations to come.

In the first of the three days against G8 in Genoa, the streets and squares of the town see the first demonstration. Participation was much bigger than expected: more than 60,000 demonstrators. The demo is both colorful and "grinning". Workers, students and citizens of Genoa take the street together with immigrants. The only one sad note are two police provocations. The first one happened when two Digos agents grabbed a girl and take her away. The protesters stop immediately, tension rose high, policeman in riot gear surrounded the demonstrators. Pressure of lawyers, many videoactivists having recorded the scene, 60,000 people watching it – all those forced the police to release the girl immediately. The second provocation happened when police charged the end of the demo for a so called "light" charge. The march continued anyway and it was a realy long demo: more than 4 kilometers. This was on the 19 of july from 5 pm till 9 pm .

On 20 July, 6:17 pm,Carlo Giuliani was killed by two shots in the middle of his face coming out of the gun of a policeman on a jeep. One of the 15,000 "controllers of the order" that were in the streets. The murder was direct result of a preparation in which the policemen have been introduced in by the governament policy. This policy decided to cancell the demonstrations since many days ago. This policy with a tactic of leting the anarchists do their vandalism without interferece untill they get near the main lines of demonstrators and than to attac brutally all the demontrators and the anarchist together without arresting only the few persons who did the vandalism. They arrested more of 60 persons and wounded more than 100.

The demonstrations never started. The police-forces attacked even during the gatherings, even though no one had moved yet. This happened after different months of terrorist campaigns set up by authorities and media with the aim of creating a climate of tension ready and easy to be manipulized. But today they have big difficulties to explain what they did.

Another demonstration in which I participated was held in the west part of Genoa. We were more then 20,000. We started in Piazza Montano, went through Lungo Mare Canepa to be near the red zone and then back again to Piazza Montano. We were organized so well that the police forces failed – going from a point to another – to find were to attack us. At the end we had some speechs and we left. Our slogans were very clearly in revealing the main aims of the imperialism, calling for solidarity with the Palestinian struggle, the Turkish people struggle, the Jugoslavian people struggle ( and so on ) for their rights.

Today, 21.7.01 is the third day of demonstrations. more than 160,000 participated in the demonstration.

The police started with arrests at the camps were the demonstrators are staying.Then begann with Tear Gases against the head of the demo without any reason and attacked it.

Police splited up the demo while tear gas. They used helicopters for doing it .Also splitting the demo in many small groups to better control them and eventually repress them. Charges on still people with tanks.

Only a part of the demo has come to the end of the march.Meanwhile riots go on with some parts of the demo in corso torino, where water cannons are nearing.

Every minute bad wounded people are coming in many places and in the hospitals. And people are arrested continuosly, but the demonstrations continues

Angelo Aidan
Member CC ICF
from Genoa