On the 18th of August there will be a solidarity demonstration in Copenhagen to mark the trial of the first two people accused of 'organizing' the protests around the COP 15. We urge everyone to spend the day or the following days on demonstrations and statements of support and solidarity – demonstration and manifestations outside Danish embassies, press work and articles - all are welcome and appreciated.
During the climate summit in Copenhagen, around 2000 people were arrested preventively and held in custody while they were trying to get their voices heard. These people along with thousands of other activists from around the world were trying to set a different and more just political agenda in the climate debate.
Approximately 20 people were detained for up to a month, out of which four people are faced with trials this autumn.* These people are accused of charges including planning violence against police, systematic vandalism and serious disturbance of public peace and order. Some of these charges are drawn from the Danish terror package and the penalties are strenghtened by the new Danish anti-protester laws introduced just prior to the COP 15. The charges they face are unfounded, but can still potentially result in years in prison.
During COP15 thousands of people from around the world gathered in Copenhagen to challenge the farcical political negotiations at the Bella Center and demand just solutions to the climate crises. We demonstrated for solutions that are not only favouring the rich western world. We protested for real solutions which are challenging the capitalist system, because this system has a constant focus on growth and profit that is obviously not able to solve the climate problems.
This dawning climate justice movement was met with antipathy and arrogance of power from the Danish government, which was reflected in the form of a massive police repression. During 2009 the Danish government and the Danish police carried out an intense scare campaign in the media to demonize protesters and activists. Police were given extra power and economic resources for the COP 15. This led to thousands of preventive arrests, month- long surveillance of telephone and raids of private homes and accommodations, and grotesque and unnecessary detentions.
The police actions were completely out of proportion and a clear violation of our democratic rights. Their actions attempted criminalization of our right to organize ourselves politically. It was made clear that any movement that dares to challenge existing power structures and demand political changes are not welcome in Denmark today. Instead of listening to the massive criticism of the negotiations, the Danish government revealed a hypocritical lack of interest in solving the climate problems. And now the Danish state is trying to make four individuals responsible for a whole movement's collective decision-making and collective protests.
In our view - the right to protest and everyone's right to be heard, is an essential element in a democracy - even if you are speaking against the existing capitalist system. We therefore call on everyone to show solidarity with the accused and make the criticism of the ongoing
We would like to receive information and documentation of any actions you take to collect on our website.
The coming trials is not just about the fact that innocent people might be convicted, but about everybody's fundamental right to demonstrate, protest, take action and organize politically. It is important that we do not sign away these rights, but continue the fight.
In Solidarity – The Climate Collective
* The four accused are: Natasha Verco, Noah Weiss, Stine Gry Jonassen and Tannie Nyboe. Natasha and Noah's trials are on the 24th, 25th and 31th of August, and Stine and Tannie's trials are on the 6th, 27th and 28th of October. The prosecution case against the Danish state about the preventive arrests are on the 23th and 30th of August and the 1st of September.