On 24 September 1998 there were police raids against three cultural associations in Duisburg the Cultural Association of Immigrants, Workers and Youth, the Association for the Advancement of the Cultural and Social Situation of the Turkish People, and the FABRIK Cultural Association.
The FABRIK Cultural Association was searched by order of the Duisburg county court. Rooms were photographed, identity details recorded, and a leaflet confiscated (in both German and Turkish versions). The judicial excuse for these police infringements are proceedings being taken against a young female immigrant charged with breaking paragraph 164 (2) of Germany's penal code. The leaflet describes earlier police attacks as unlawful, and on that basis she is charged with having wrongly accused the police in a way that is likely to induce or allow the continuance of official proceedings or other official measures against the police. If found guilty she is liable to up to five years imprisonment.
The state is offended by a leaflet published by leftist Turkish and Kurdish immigrant associations and Kurdistan Solidarity Duisburg, which protested against the repeated police attacks on those associations. This state repression of left immigrant organisations has been going on in Duisburg for years. Attacks have sometimes been intensified, and for a time were virtually weekly, leading on 15 November 1997 to a protest demonstration by Kurdish, Turkish and German organisations.
These court and police measures are intended to put the memberships of these associations under pressure as well as deter visitors to their premises, and to intimidate neighbours. The clear aim of these police attacks is to criminalise free political activity and organisation (especially the political activity and organisation of immigrants) and to suppress political co-operation among German, Turkish and Kurdish leftists.
An injury to one is an injury to all! The left and the workers movement of all countries must unite against state repression!
Regardless of political differences among us, the signatories to this protest demand: