Caravan Diary: Tuesday, July 10    <->

At 11:00am on Tuesday approximately thirty-five people gathered in front of the Siska Detention Center in Ljubljana, Slovenia, to protest the inhumane conditions faced by those denied the freedom of migration. The demonstrators were demanding the closure of all such facilities and an end to the system of borders which imprisons human beings, while allowing the free movement of capital. Many of the activists are participants in the Publixtheater-Caravan, which is travelling Europe this summer as part of the "No-Borders Network".

Siska Detention Center is a bleak grey building, ironically situated next to an imposing McDonalds -- complete with a leering statue of Ronald the Clown. The first floor features bars across its dirty windows. The center houses approximately three hundred refugees (though estimates vary); the site contains both asylum seekers and people awaiting deportation. Overcrowding and shortages of food are both well documented.

Two police officers from the center, along with representatives from the mainstream media, observed as protesters, some clad in hard-hats and bright orange worksuits, unrolled colorful banners and built a tower of tires in the parking lot facing the building. Signs featured "No-Borders" slogans in a variety of languages, testimony to the diversity of those present. Several participants proudly waved red and black anarchist flags. Accompanied by one megaphone, the crowd chanted loudly, alternating between English, Slovenian, German, Slovakian, French, and Spanish. While the majority of the group congregated in front of the building, a few people displayed banners along the busy street, drawing supportive honks from passing traffic and attracting a crowd of curious onlookers. Three media activists entered the center, but were denied the opportunity to meet with any of the prisoners.

Siska detainees peered through windows, enthusiatically chanting in numerous native languages. They began to throw down crumpled pieces of paper, scrawled notes expressing their appreciation and detailing conditions inside the center. "Please come to our rescue. We are dying," read one; another stated in "Hayasizliktan Kalbibiz Sikisiyor- Help our body. No food. Nothing. Only Prison." A beautifully rendered drawing of the Statue of Liberty in shackles and chains floated down among the messages. From one window, a crowd of prisoners dangled a white sheet hastily scrawled with "Freiheit" (Freedom). Pillows and blankets were also liberated onto the grass below.

Four more guards emerged from inside the building, joined moments later by several police vehicles. The officers cordoned off the parking lot with white and blue "Policija Stop" tape, and attempted to move back the demonstrators. When this tactic proved unsuccessful, authorities lined up a few feet in front of the building, blocking the entrance and preventing physical contact with the detainees. Several demonstrators tried to propel the tire structure past the guards, and a brief shoving match ensued. Not surprisingly, the authorities denied entrance to the rubber tower- a symbolical representation of "the only alien present".

A shortime later, prisoners unleashed a shower of oragami paper birds and confetti, and a strand of black beads. Police grudgingly allowed demonstrators to gather the items. Activists and corporate media filmed the growing collection of notes and artwork, a moving testimony to the situation inside Siska. A protester retrieved the red sheet tossed down by a detainee, decorated it with "Free All Prisoners" and a black star, and returned it to be hung from a first floor window. Police cornered one man who attempted to pass out cigarettes to the residents and demanded to see his documents. Once his "citizenship" was established, though; they allowed him to re-enter the crowd.

The demonstration ended around 12:30 pm. The majority of participants returned to Metelkova, the local autonomous site for alternative culture. After several minutes, a lone police car pulled into the dusty parking lot. The three officers announced that they intended to accompany the Caravan to the Slovenian border. They questioned the activists about their destination and time of departure. Caravan participants readily supplied the information, explaining that all their plans are public knowledge. When the people questioned the officers about their perspective on the detention center, one cop asserted that the detainees are "different than war refugees." When asked to elaborate upon this statement, he announced, "Enough discussion. I'm not paid to discuss." "What are you paid to do?" "Guard you!" he growled, walking away. However, the police left the premises a short time later.

The Publixtheatre-Caravan, along with other individual participants in the day's action, had convened in Lendava, Slovenia during the past weekend for a No-Borders Camp. The camp was uniquely situated at the Slovenian borders with Croatia, Hungary, and Austria to call attention to the local problems associated with the designation of national borders. This gathering was part of an ongoing mobilization across the continent, organized to contest the present world order in which social and environment well-being are perpetually sacrificed to neoliberal or nationalistic agendas. Yesterday's press release from the Caravan is below:

Für unsere Verhältnisse früh wurde am nächsten Morgen, Dienstag, 10.7. Frühstück zubereitet. Zwei Karawanenreisende warfen sich in "Schale" um als internationale Delegation um 10 Uhr 30 im Schubgefängnis vorzusprechen. Informationen über die Zustände im Gefängnis sollten eingeholt werden. Der andere Teil der Karawane bekleidete sich mit orange Overalls und Helme und machte sich etwas später zum Abschiebehäfn Siska auf. Dort erwarteten uns schon FreundInnen aus Ljubljana und einige VertreterInnen der slowenischen Presse. Zwei TV und drei Radiostationen waren anwesend. Die internationale Delegation in Schale kam nicht sehr weit, bereits beim Portier des Gefängnisses war Endstation. Um ca. 11 Uhr begann die Kundgebung auf dem Vorplatz des Häfns an der ungefähr 35 Personen teilnahmen. Das Abschiebegefängnis Siska besteht aus zwei Teilen. In den oberen Stockwerken werden Asylsuchende festgehalten, die nur mit einem Erlaubnisschein das Gebäude verlassen dürfen. In den unteren Etagen befindet sich das eigentliche Abschiebegefängnis. Insgesamt befinden sich ca. 300 Leute im diesem Gebäude. Nach Angaben von Leuten aus Ljubljana soll dieser Schubhäfn in den nächsten Monaten geschlossen werden. Das bedeutet aber nur eine örtliche Verlagerung an den Rand der Stadt um das "Stadtbild" nicht zu stören. Ironischer Weise befindet sich neben dem Häfn eine MacDonalds-Filiale. An der prekären Situation der Asylsuchenden und Schubhäftlinge ändert die Verlagerung nichts, eher bedeutet dies eine Verschlechterung, da ausserhalb der Stadt noch weniger Menschen davon Notiz nehmen werden.

Leute von der Karawane versuchten einen aus alten Autoschläuchen geformten Alien über die Eingangsstiegen in das Gefängnis zu bringen. Die anwesenden PolizistInnen verhinderten dies. Mit dieser Aktion sollte symbolisch ausgedrückt werden, dass die wahren Aliens sich nicht im Gefängnis befinden sondern die Konstruktion des Fremden auf konstruierten Symboliken beruht. In verschieden Sprachen (slowenisch, slowakisch, englisch, deutsch, spanisch, französisch) wurde "Bewegungsfreiheit" - "Freedom of movement" gefordert. Die GefängnisinsassInnen anworteten ebenfalls mit Sprechchören. Insgesamt war die Aktion von der Erkenntnis geprägt, dass wir die Leute im Abschiebehäfn (darunter viele Kinder) nicht wirklich unterstützen können. Unterstützung kann ihnen nur auf politischer, medialer und symbolischer Ebene geboten werden. Während der Kundgebung wurden zig beschriebene Zettel und Zeichnungen, auch Origami-Kraniche und andere kunstvolle Faltblätter aus den Fenstern geworfen, immer mit der Bitte um Hilfe. Nach ungefähr eineinhalb Stunden wurde die Aktion beendet, die Karawane zog sich unter Polizeibegleitung wieder ins Metelkova zurück. Die PolizistInnen teilten uns mit, dass sie den Auftrag hätten uns bis zum Verlassen des slowenischen Staatsgebiets zu verfolgen. Wollen uns wohl loswerden, oder was?

Zur Zeit ist die Karawane auf dem Weg nach Eisenkappel/Kärnten ins dortige PartisanInnenmuseum.

Estamos en Ljubljana (Eslovenia) son las 11 am. Al frente del Centro de Detención Siska, somos aproximadamente treinta y cinco personas, protestando en contra de este centro y las condiciones inhumanas en las que mantienen detenid@s a l@s inmigrantes. L@s demostrantes estamos demandando el cierre de este centro y el fin del sistema de represión.

El Centro de Detención Siska, es un edificio irónicamente situado al frente de un McDonald´s. Es un centro donde habitan al rededor de trescientas personas (hombres, nin@s y mujeres) personas a las que se les fué negado el asilo y están en espera de una deportación. Dos policias del centro, acompanados de representantes de medias comerciales, observaban la protesta, disfrazados con nuestros trajes naranjas, gritando a través de un megáfono las premisas de la Caravana "No border! No nations! Stop deportations!", "Freedom for the prissioners" en varias lenguas (inglés, alemán, espanol,francés, eslovaco...). Distribuimos material con información sobre la situación de l@s inmigrantes... Tres representantes de la protesta lograron entrar en el centro, pero no pudieron reunirse con ninguna persona.

L@s detenid@s de la prisión estuvieron asomad@s por las ventanas, entusiasmad@s cantaron en sus lenguas nativas, desplegaron notas apreciando nuestra acción y también denunciando la situación dentro "por favor vengan a rescatarnos, nosotr@s estamos muriendo" escribieron en una, " ayudennos, no tenemos comida, nada, sólo prisión", también asomaron banderas blancas que solicitaban "libertad", asi mismo lanzaron almohadas y figuras de origamí.

La policía vino, he intentó que nos devolviéramos y terminaramos todo, cuando se dieron cuenta de que no nos movíamos, decidieron bloquear la entrada y cualquier contacto físico con l@s prisioner@s, uno de las personas intentó darle cigarros a un prisionero, un policía le detuvo y le pidió los documentos

La demostración terminó al rededor de las 12:30 pm, la mayoría de los participantes retornaron a Metelkova, una ocupación. Luego de unos minutos apareció una patrulla de policias con la excusa de que debian acompanar a la Caravana hacia la frontera, preguntaron nuestra destinación y la hora en que partiríamos. Les informamos que la CaravanaPublixtheatre, esta haciendo un tour oficial y que por ello no existe razón alguna para salir de Eslovenia. Les preguntamos sus puntos de vista acerca del centro de detención, obteniendo como respuesta que: "l@s detenid@s son diferentes a refugiados de guerra", le pedimos que nos explicaran mejor, que querian decir con ello, repondieron "suficientes discusiones, nosotros no recibimos dinero por esto", entonces preguntamos ?por qué les pagan?, respondiendo de manera desdenoza "por vigilarlos a ustedes" y se fueron. <Atrás>

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Pressrelease for the action against the detention centre in ljubljana, July 10, 2001 one is illegal

"Freedom of movement" is the objective of the Publixtheatre-Caravan, which is travelling Europe as part of the noborder network during the summer of 2001. Every year, the barbarism of the migration-control regime causes thousands of deaths along the borders between east and west, north and south. As it becomes easier for goods and capital to flow around the globe, border crossings become more difficult for most human beings.

Borders exist to be crossed. People have the right to decide for themselves where they want to live and how. We do not need a globalization designed only for corporations and their hunger for more and cheaper labour, legal as well as illegalised. Therefore, we are going to the borders of Europe. We are gathering to bring forward a real international movement that grows from the ground up, which meets the needs of people to communicate, to exchange experiences and to cooperate.

Detention centres are prisons designed to prevent people from travelling to where they want to live and having better opportunities to live their life. We think that kind of policy is the racist face of "modern" nationalism. A nationalism of wealthy countries to keep their own wealth, ignoring the riches to be found in diversity.

The Publixtheatre-Caravan moved from Vienna on June 27 to take part on the actions against the World Economic Forum summit in Salzburg, Austria, then moved to the border camp in Petisovici, Slovenia. On July 10 we are taking part on an action in front of the detention centre Siska in Ljubljana, Slovenia.

In the Detention Centre Siska there are closed rooms with 25 square meters of floor space, filled with 30 to 50 people. Most people in the Detention Centre are not allowed to go out. The guards told us that the bars on the windows should have indicated to us that something was wrong. The police who guard the Centre told us that prisoners need permission from a so-called social worker to exit, but we know that the most prisoners do not receive permission. The people are not allowed to work to support themselves and they get no money. This Detention Centre is a prison for those whose only crime is existence.

When we visited the Detention Centre people sent messages to us outside the Centre in the form of papers thrown from the windows, expressing their feelings and asking for help: "If the birds are not free, the human freedom means nothing. We don`t need Turkey, we need liberty." "We Turkish people don't want to go back. Like Kurds from Turkey we are asking for help from you. We are humans too. We ask for help from the Unicef."

The Publixtheatre Caravan is demanding from the Slovenian government, as from all governments, to close not only this detention centre but all detention centers. People are not treated as human beings but as economic burdens. We reject that kind of view. Detentions centres are a tool of the racist and oppressive policies imposed by "Fortress Europe". They must be closed now.

The next stop of the caravan will be Eisenkappel, Austria, where we will visit the museum of partisans, Austria´s antifascist resistance movement. We will then go to Genova, Italy to visit the G8-summit from July 19 to July 22. The last stop will be the border camp on Frankfurt-Airport, in Germany, which takes place from July 28 till August 5.

Freedom of movement:
The Schengen border must be crossed. This artificial barrier, designed by European "migration specialists" must be terminated. The borders within our minds must be removed.
The international noborder network will cross these borders. No one is illegal.

See more information on and

Publixtheatrecaravan July 10, 2001

Sporocilo za javnost

Svoboda gibanja je glavni cilj Publixtheatre karavane, ki potuje po Evropi kot del aktivisticne mreze Brez meja. Barbarski nacin nadziranja migracij povzroci vsako leto tisoce smrti na mejah med vzhodom in zahodom ter severom in jugom. V casu, ko kapital vse lazje potuje preko meja, prost prehod drzavnih meja ostaja privilegij manjsine.

Meje obstajajo zato, da jih presezemo. Ljudje se imajo pravico odlociti, kje in kako zelijo ziveti. Taksne globalizacije, ki je prirejena samo za korporacije in njihovo potrebo po ceneni delovni sili (legalni ali nelegalni), ne potrebujemo. Zato hodimo po mejah evropske trdnjave. Zbiramo se, gradimo mednarodno gibanje, ki raste od "spodaj navzgor" (od posameznikov k gibanju) in zadovoljuje potrebe ljudi po komunikaciji, sodelovanju in izmenjavi izkusenj.

Centri za odstanjevanje tujcev so ustanovljeni z namenom, da ljudem preprecijo pot v lepse zivljenje. Menimo, da je tovrstna politike rasisticna in izraza sodobne oblike nacionalizma; predvsem nacionalizem bogatih drzav, ki hocejo obdrzati svoje bogastvo zase.

Publixtheatre karavana se je odpotovala iz Dunaja 27.junija, se udele? ila protestov proti srecanju Svetovnega ekonomskega foruma v Salzburgu in nato sodelovala pri Kampu brez meja v Petisovcih (Slovenija). 10.julija smo se zbrali pred Centrom za odstranjevanje tujcev v Siski v Ljubljani.

V Centru za odstranjevanje tujcev v Siski se v pritlicju nahajajo sobe zaprtega tipa, ki merijo le 25 m2, v njih pa je zaprtih od 30 do 50 ljudi. Svoboda gibanja vecine ljudi je omejena. Brez propustnice socialnega delavca ljudem izhod iz centra ni dovoljen. Policaji so nam rekli, da bi nam morale rezetke na oknih sob v pritlicju povedati, da je v centru nekaj narobe. Ljudje iz centra v Sloveniji legalno nimajo pravice delati, da bi si tako lahko osmislili prezivetje. Center za odstranjevanje tujcev je zapor za ljudi, katerih edini zloèin je ta, da civijo.

Ob obisku Centra za odstranjevanje tujcev so nam ljudje, ki so zaprti v centru, skozi zamrezena okna poziljali svoja sporocila, ki so vsa izrazala njihovo stisko, predvsem pa klic na pomoc. Sporocila so glasila: "Ce ptice niso svobodne, potem tudi svoboda ljudi nic ne pomeni. Turcije ne potrebujemo z potrebujemo prostost." "Drzavljani Turcije se nocemo vrniti v Turcijo. Tako kot Kurdi iz Turcije tudi mi prosimo za vazo pomoc. Tudi mi smo ljudje. Za pomoc naprozamo Unicef."

Slovensko, kot tudi vse ostale vlade pozivamo, da takoj zapre vse domove za odstranjevanje tujcev. Gostje iz tujine so obravnavani kot zgolj ekonomsko breme in ne kot clovezka bitja. Tovrsten odnos in politiko ostro zavracamo. Zbirni centri za tujce so orodja rasisticne in represivne politike Evropske trdnjave. Takoj morajo biti zaprti.

Svoboda gibanja pomeni, da morajo biti Schengenske meje prehodne za vse ljudi. Umeten zid, zasnovan po nacrtih "strokovnjakov za migracije" mora pasti. Najprej pa morajo izginiti meje v nazih glavah.

Mednarodna mreza Brez meja gre preko meja, kajti noben clovek ni ilegalen.

Vez informacij o mrezi Brez meja se nahaja na: na in na:

Publixtheatre Caravan

V Ljubljani, 10. julija 2001

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