international bordercamp strasbourg

Report from the trail against Ahmed

this item is available in: [en] [de] [fr]

30.Nov.99 - Ahmed's trial happened on Wednesday August 21 in a "state of siege"-style atmosphere. The entrance to the court was guarded all day by mobile gards and national police in abundance. Only 6 people were allowed to attend the trial.

These measures bear witness once more to the cruel and unusual treatment to which Ahmed is a victim: incarceration, isolation, hearing for pretrial release without a lawyer, pretrial detention, prohibition on visits... Ahmed was condemned to 8 months imprisonment of which 5 could be served as parole. We can hardly do other than notice the "zero tolerance" context of these last months. The sentences rendered for similar offenses (insulting and assault on a police officer) have been much heavier. This only underlines the fact that this condemndation is not a true recognition of culpability, but an attempt to intimidate the movement.

As concerns the accusations against Ahmed, the verdict comes as a condemnation to make him into an example to condemn all the actions that happened during the NoBorder camp. During the trial, this intention became even clearer as they tried to demonize the political dimension and ignore the police violence: the testimony of the activist injured by the rubber bullet was not heard. Furthermore, the repeated inconsistencies in the police officers' testimonies were not recorded. The prosecution tried to stigmatize the NoBorder camp by charicature: ("paramilitary group, specializing in urban guerilla warfare") and insulted Ahmed (calling him "coward, puny"). The final insult, Ahmed heard the verdict in handcuffs. We were a hundred people protesting in front of the Tribunal, while actions were held in France and Europe (see specific communiques about the different actions).

The results of this trial, the first of a series of trials, will not pass without reactions. Through this, it is all of us who are targeted, we who are trying to subvert the social order and destroy the constraints that lock in our desires.

We demand the abolition of solitary confinement, which Ahmed and many other prisoners are victim to. We demand, in the name of the No Border Network and all the individuals and groups participating in the camp, the immediate liberation of Ahmed and an end to the prosecutions against all those accused.