Police bash and gas anti-nuclear trek people


Police bashed people with truncheons, used pepper spray and teargas, held a pistol to a farmer’s temple and used dogs in a clash at Morsleben, north Germany, where anti-nuclear demonstrators protested against a collapsing waste dump.

It was the first incident since hundreds of farm tractors set off on 29 July from two nuclear dumps in Gorleben on a run of hundreds of kilometres to Berlin for a demo expected to attract tens of thousands of people on Saturday.

Organisers said they will file charges against the police and allege they attacked deliberately to criminalise a peaceful protest to sway public opinion against nuclear opponents.

About 200 people, trek participants and local protesters, some dressed as clowns, opened the gate of the dump compound and entered. Some climbed a tower and hung banners.

Police pushed the protesters out, several using pepper spray. A farmer who refused to give his personal details was dragged away by ten policemen. One policeman even pulled his pistol, waved it around and, according to eye witnesses, held it to the farmer’s temple.

Tear gas, pepper spray and baton blows injured several protesters, some considerably, as police laughed at and mocked them as they lay on the ground. Pepper spray is claimed to have been deliberately aimed at eyes.

"There were countless eye injuries and activists bashed bloody,” said the president of the Gorleben resistance group, Kerstin Rudek. "After the many peaceful images of the peaceful trek they obviously wanted to stamp it as a convoy of slobs and anarchists.”

The onward journey of the trek was delayed as police held it, saying they needed to pick out “offenders”.  When demo leaders responded that they’d set up a camp outside the dump grounds until everyone was allowed to drive off, police finally let the trek move on.

It was rumoured that the police minister wants to speak to the trek about the clashes.

So far up to 100 buses as well as several special trains have been booked to run to Berlin. Hitchhiking is being organised.

Meanwhile the power industry is organising a pro-nuclear demonstration at a nuclear station at Biblis, in central Germany, one of whose two blocks is due to be switched off by the end of the year. The power companies are alleged to have press-ganged all their apprentices to attend, which makes a potential of 10,000 demonstrators alone.

Pictures of the events in Morsleben are downloadable free of charge from

http://www.publixviewing.de/sortiment/bild-1/index.html. Live web-cam coverage from the trek is available at http://www.livestream.com/undergroundreports.


Other nuclear news:

·      The Lower Saxony Social Democrat parliamentary opposition leader, Wolfgang Jüttner, demands that locations in south Germany be examined as possible waste dump sites. “Gorleben is dead,” he told a newspaper. It had been known already in the 1960s that water could penetrate into the Gorleben salt dome.


·      The Federal Office for Radiation protection (BfS) says it intends to decide before the end of the year what to do about closing the Asse II nuclear dump at Wolfenbuettel, which is taking in 12 cubic metres of brine daily. Scientific findings are expected at the start of October. Various methods of closure are under consideration.


Press telephones in the trek:

• 0160 / 8716690 (Kerstin Rudek, Gorleben civic action group)

• 0151 / 23626609 (Peter-Wilhelm Timme, Gorleben farmers protest group)