[en] Repression against occupations in Bologna

Bologna’s warm autumn has begun with three new occupations started on the 11.11 but local government promptly repressed two of them, clearing the protesters out of two the Sabin highschool and the Arcobaleno cinema.

In the morning of the 15.11 variuos police forces entered into the highschool courtyard threatening the students and forced them to leave the occupation. Students described local government decision as a very grave and worrying event. In solidarity with Sabin students, in the evening two other schools in town have been occupied.

On 16.11 at 6 am the Arcobaleno cinema occupation was also cleared. In the evening of the 15th, Timeout, a network of various grassroots movements united under the “Santa Insolvenza” (Saint Insolvency) logo, had a meeting with the city mayor, Virginio Merola, who did not give the occupants neither the permission to stay in the abandoned cinema nor the commitment to assign a new place. The occupants – students, activists and many common people – waited for the police while projecting movies and documentaries and playing music all night. During the four days of occupation the Cinema Arcobaleno became a centre of Bologna’s cultural life showing the capacity of local grassroots movements to reorganize a public space almost forgotten after five years of unfinished renovation works. Located in the very centre of the city, it was occupied to become a community cultural centre and to sustain the struggles for the right of insolvency. The occupants received variuos solidarity statements from the occupied Valle Theatre in Rome and from many italian intellectuals.
The mayor’s decision to assign a theatre to the Disobbedienti movement, which had started another occupation on 11.11, generated instead a bitter controversy and divisions among protesters. The Arcobaleno occupants accused the Disobbedienti of not sustaining a common struggle looking for their own advantages and using their proximity with the Sel (left-wing) party.

The students movement and the Santa Insolvenza followers affirmed that the struggle does not end. More rallies and protests are planned for today, the international students day. Meanwhile, in Bologna, two highschools and the humanities university continue to be occupied.


– text [it] Carabinieri at the Sabin Highschool during the occupation
– text [it] Cinema arcobaleno cleared out by police (Il Fatto Quotidiano)
– video [en] Cinema Arcobaleno cleared out
– photos [it] Photos of the demonstration

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