Berlin bans Nakba demonstrations once again in 2023

The German state intensifies its attack and bans demonstrations on Nakba Day 2023

A statement from the Revolutionary Solidarity Coalition

The German state authorities are escalating their attack on all Palestinians, Arabs and supporters of the Palestinian cause in Germany, with the Berlin police’s banning of this year’s demonstration in Berlin to mark the 75th anniversary of the Nakba, scheduled for Sunday, 14 May 2023. This repressive attack is taking place as Israeli fighter jets bomb the besieged Gaza Strip, killing 33 Palestinians to date, including 6 children and 3 women. More than 100 people have been injured in the aerial bombing and hundreds of people were denied emergency medical care due to siege and enforced border closures. The number of martyrs in Palestine has risen to 147 since the beginning of the year.

Around 80,000 Palestinians live in Berlin. Despite having lived in Germany for many years, many of them do not have a secure residence status and are often precariously employed and exposed to discrimination and harassment by the state. The German state also criminalizes protest against the ongoing war crimes in their homeland and their involvement in the struggle for their liberation and return. This attack is not only aimed at them, but also at the millions of people who demonstrated across Germany in 2021 during the “Saif Al-Quds”/Unity uprising in Palestine in 2021.

Such domestic political decisions by the German state are inseparable from its ongoing diplomatic, economic and military support for Israel at the international level. With its support of the Zionist colony in Palestine, Germany is not a spectator but a complicit participant in the ongoing Nakba and genocidal war against Palestinians.

The Revolutionary Solidarity Coalition was formed last year around the same time that the 2022 Nakba demonstrations were banned. A spokesperson for the alliance notes that demonstration bans are part of “a long chain of repression by the German state, which serve as an instrument for crushing progressive and revolutionary forces.”

The justifications for the ban build on the racist practices of the state. Anti-Palestinian racism is instrumentalized by describing the Palestinian diaspora and participants in the demonstration as “highly emotionalized men” and thus wanting to dictate to the Palestinians, in full colonial tradition, a dehumanized, emotionally-cold attitude towards the occupation, their exile and the attempts at annihilation to which they are exposed.

Four days before our demonstration planned for May 14, 2023, the Berlin police had already attempted to intimidate us. We were threatened that all Arabic speeches, songs and chants would be recorded for later use in law enforcement.

This ban is an attack on us all! The right to freedom of expression and association is a fundamental human right and as such must not be arbitrarily curtailed.

As a Coalition, we therefore call on everyone to show solidarity and break the ongoing silence on the criminalization of Palestinian, revolutionary and anti-imperialist struggles!

Support our team of lawyers who will take on the legal fight against the ban on demonstrations and the court cases for those who are being prosecuted by the state for their struggle for a liberated Palestine.

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Note: Palaestina gegen Repression