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Repression of Gênes 2001
by Yoann, France Saturday, Nov. 21, 2009 at 11:27 AM

On the 9th of november, italian courts sentenced on appeal the Genova 2001 countersummit's ten defendants. They were sentenced, for "destruction and vandalizing," to very long terms of imprisonment without remission.

On the 9th of november, italian courts sentenced on appeal the Genova 2001 countersummit's ten defendants. They were sentenced, for "destruction and vandalizing," to very long terms of imprisonment without remission. ARLO ARCULEO : 8 YEARS CARLO CUCCOMARINO : 8 YEARS MARINA CUGNASCHI : 12 YEARS AND 3 MONTHS LUC FINOTTI : 10 YEARS AND 3 MONTHS ALBERTO FUNARO : 10 YEARS INES MORASCA : 6 YEARS AND 6 MONTHS FRANCESCO PUGLISI : 15 YEARS DARIO URSINO : 7 YEARS ANTONIO VALGUARNERA : 8 YEARS VICENZO VECCHI : 13 YEARS AND 3 MONTHS.

48 hours before took place the trial of the 45 policemen, in which only 15 of them have been very lightly sentenced. Prefect Ganni di Gennaro, who was head of the police at the time, and others members of the hierarchy who were in charge of the repression on july 2001 were acquitted, although the courts regarded as illegal the police charge which has generated the most violent confrontations. Repression caused the death of Carlo Gulliani, a 23 years old boy, shot during this charge, hundreds of injured and led to violences, the most important of which happened in the Diaz school, where the independant media center was settled. 307 demonstrators were sleeping there and, after being arrested, were confined three days in the Bolzaneto Casern, where they have been put through physical abuses and humiliations.

What has happened during Genova's days was the pratical and mighty gathering of an opposition to the heads of State of the planet meeting, and, more generally, to the world’s economic order. International meeting, social forum : 300 000 personnes met at the 20th July demonstration, despite the militarization and the fact that city was locked.

Eight years after, on the 9th November 2009, pronouced sentences are very, very heavy. Disproportion is obvious between the charges for the destruction of material assets and these about one hundred years of imprisonement. It is not such or such individual’s act, or one random person which are punished, but all the political events of the countersummit. Those ten pay for the whole collective action, for the social and political movement which have emerged in Genova. This adjudication sounds as an alarm for everyone who challenges the social order. It is in line with the strong repression measures of the countersummit. These trials appear as the second wave of revenge from the Italian state, and its efforts to confine the struggle against social injustice and fierce economical relationships to some invisible, sanitized shapes which will never threaten the established law and order.

The power accepts less and less unauthorized revolts. Although social tensions and conflicts tend to increase, these sentences take another step toward nowadays repressive delirium, in Italia as well as abroad. France has also its exemples in this field, as the recent Poitiers' events (an anti-carceral demonstration, during which a few storewindows have been broken). After this, a man has been sentenced to 4 months' imprisonment for « battery throwing on policemen », and another was taken in for questioning because he compared, during the demonstration of support, a police officer to a well-known collaborationnist.

Besides the fact that Genova's sentences are beyond belief, and out of proportion with the most heavy sentences usually pronounced concerning this kind of acts, they are absolutly apart from the most ordinary rules of the penal law. For a few property damages, the convicts get sentences that murderers would not serve. As the State disguises assasinations in road deaths (as in Villiers-le-Bel, or more recently in Fréjus), it represses without observing the rules it has lain down for itself. It also breaks the law when it protects its own kind against legal proceedings for bribery and corruption, or disorderly conducts. Power struggles at work in society always sweep across the Law: sometimes, the Law does not have the time to adapt itself to new domination pratices. So its sacrosanct independence is broken. But law is no longer, and it has been this way for a long time, a goody-goody. In most of cases law adapts itself, and, in our all-out repressive times, it gives birth to anti-terrorism laws, which allow to torture Irakian people, or lock communist grocers up. If law has once guaranteed individual liberties and faced the State’s arbitrary, nowadays, it is no more than the toy of the State’s arbitrary, which uses it according to its spirits. The one who begs from the judicial system a bit of social justice, considers this courts and jail bureaucracy as a guarantee of a love and peace. Those who rather demonstrate next to police officers than next to the storewindow breakesr do nothing except delay the exploited’s emancipation by themselves.

Now, while our Italian comrades have been persecuted by the Berlusconi governement for eight years, let's do everything possible to stop the legal prosecutions against them, and to make this kind of sentences no longer possible.

We call for an in-action solidarity to show up against these unbearable trials. We call for not giving up to this intimidation and not forgetting that, here and there, power has good reasons to tremble.

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