Tagged: football

Mayor once again attempts to segregate public spaces – this time banning football

Sunday, like every Sunday for more than two years, people of many nationalities gathered in the citadel, a sports area in Calais to play football

However in recent weeks it seems the Town Hall has decided it no longer wants ‘migrants’ to play football in public areas.

On Sunday, September 7, the group Sauvons Calais, supported by radical far-right organizations, demonstrate before the town hall of Calais. A ‘Football Against Racism’ tournament is organised in parallel on the grounds of the citadel, where they play every Sunday. But they find the citidel doors closed because of a decision of the municipality to prevent the tournament. So people decided to move the tournament to a different field, people had a great day and it finished beautifully with a rap battle.

On Sunday, September 14, people come again to train at the citadel as usual. The caretaker of the citadel tells them they are not allowed to play. They ask for an official written decision, there is none – so they start playing. Three officials from the Town Hall; Agius, Garnet and Mignonet with their favourite police ushers, came down personally to tell people the Mayor does will not allow them to play football on this public land. They say the Mayor has decided only liscenced clubs or children under 10 years old are allowed to play football here (or more like white-looking European people). Players decided to ignore this clearly racist attempt to stop them coming to this popular sports area, and continued to play.

So the national police were instructed to come on to the pitch and ask the players to leave the field. But the players refused, and people continued to play football.

On Sunday 21st people come again to play football at the citedel. The city council has put a sign at the entrance to the site to reserve the use of the licensed clubs and students, following on from their attempt last Sunday to deny access. The Deputy Mayor Mignonet, comes again accompanied by his other favourite users, bailiffs, to claim people playing football will be charged with ‘occupation of the land’. The bailiff became very aggressive when we asked him why it is no problem for other young people of Calais who were playing on the same field.

When interviewed by the local paper, it seems the Town Hall is wanting to extend this to every public space in Calais. If you want to play football, says Emmanuel Agius, you must request permission from the town hall unless you are under 10 years. Agius says, “You can walk in public places, but for the rest, you have to ask permission from the mayor. We do not play ball in the park, at least not that way! If they ask permission, the mayor will decide. Me anyway, I do not give a favorable opinion to the No Border: These convicts are clearly my enemies.” [1]

And so the Town Hall shows its alliances once again ; neo-Nazis fascists are given permission to have a platform outside the Town Hall to openly incite racist hatred and violence, while at-the-same-time, ‘migrants’ are banned – with assistance of cops and baliffs – from playing football or ‘the rest’ in public places. There are elected officials who consider municipal property as their private property, and can choose to exclude those they dislike.

Hundreds join Neo-Nazis in Fascist Demo

Outside the Town Hall on Sunday 7th September over three hundred fascists made a demonstration against the presence of ‘migrants’ in the city. The demo was organised by the racist neo-Nazis group, ‘Sauvons Calais’, and attended by local fascists and other ultra-right groups and individuals from other parts of France, Belgium and UK.

There can be no doubt about the violently racist and xenophobic ideology of this rally, from Nazis salutes, to swastika tattoos, SS division t-shirts and signs that say ‘Lets Get Them Out’ : the message was clear from just looking at the crowd.

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‘High-profile’ neo-Nazis speakers (pictured above and below) were invited to incite hatred, racial violence and the values of white supremacy also, for example, praising the actions of Golden Dawn in Greece who are well known for organising openly as neo-Nazis and attacking and murdering ‘migrants’ and anti-fascists under the banner of a ‘pure nationalism’.

Here is a closer look at what some of these ‘high-profile’ speakers look and sound like – the quotes below are taken from their speeches to the crowds or interviews with journalists during the demo:

Thomas Joly (secrétaire général du Parti de la France, formerly from the Front National) :

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“Yes we want a camp, a camp for imprisonment and expulsion of aliens to their country of origin”, [1]

“The black-blanc-beur [a phrase relating to the coming together of black, whites and arabs] caused the destruction of this country”, “[we need] to conduct a war for the survival of our country and our people, to make France for the French”, [2]

“The future of the white world is challenged”. [3]

Yvan Benedetti, (conseiller municipal de Venissieux and former-member of the now banned organization L’Œuvre française) :

yvanBenedetti

“We must finish with the migrants”, “We are against extreme left and foreign scum”. [2]

Richard Roudier (of Réseau dentités), a network which wants to create a “strong France”, “protect our civilisation”, and “stop the human and cultural immigration that tends to transform Europe into a multi-ethnic society” :

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“It’s good that my anger has been made happy today, it is from Brest to Vladisvostok and from Calais to Lampedusa, that the people are rising up and saying no to the invasion of our continent. [3]

And of course, lest not forget, the self-appointed spokesperson of Sauvons Calais, Kevin Riche, the one with the swastika tattoo on his chest who invited all these fascists to Calais to fight the “invasion of migrants”, yet stills tries to convince journalists at the demo “we are neither racist nor Nazi”, whilst people at the demo hail-Hitler salute behind him.

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“For me, the event went well overall, the Calais is mobilizing people. I did not see racism. I have not seen anything shocking”. [3]

…Kevin, who is also chummy with Marine Le Pen…
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Also, in the crowd are ‘Blood and Honour’ supporters, symbolised by the code 28, referring to the second and eighth letters of the alphabet,”B” and “H”. Jackets worn at the demo have “Support 28 Hexagon” symbol (see below), which is the French branch of the organization…
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Blood and Honour’ is an organisation openly calling for Nazism and was a motto of the Hitler Youth.

There was also plenty SS t-shits, including “Charlemagne 1944″ in reference to a French SS division…
sauvons-calais-divison-charlemagne

The micro-totalitarian state that is Calais has not only given neo-Nazis a platform, but has laid the foundations. The fascists are an extension of what the state has created, and a continuation of what the state can not so easily, or publicly, get away with.

The government are the puppeteers behind over a decade of harassment and attacks aimed at physically removing a certain section of society, ‘migrants’, from Calais; beating and tiring people down whilst destroying their means of living – with local, border and riot cops all employed, day in and day out, in order to try to disappear ‘migrants’ from the city, as well as using ‘extra-ordinary’ measures to crack down on its supporters – from general harassment to futile arrests or banning ‘supportive’ events or festivals and closing down and fencing off public spaces..

And so it is no co-incidence that meanwhile, on the same day as the fascist demo is permitted to rally in the centre of town, the Mayor decides to close the citadelle (and sports area in Calais) by way of a “Municipal Decree” to prevent an event “Football of the World Against Racism” organised the same day involving eight teams, hundreds of refugees and some locals and associations.