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Nuclear opponents delay waste transport

Diet S. - borrowing from various activists | 12.11.2006 09:36

Anti-nuclear activists on Saturday delayed a waste train from northern France to northern Germany by several hours, said the French reprocessing company, Areva.

The train carrying 12 Castor train storage caskets was held up before Serqueux near Rouen because activists were near the track. Two years ago a protester was killed when he was sucked under a Castor train train.

In and near the village of Gorleben, where the 10th such shipment is headed for storage in a hall, the hot phase of protest has begun. At an afternoon demonstration, several thousand demonstrators from the region and across Germany demanded that all nuclear facilities be switched off and all waste transports stopped. Organisers put the number there at 5,000, the police name 2,000. The activists say with them were 200 farmers with tractors.

Pulled by three locomotives the train has two passenger cars for police
and an accompanying car in addition to the 12 heavy duty Castor train wagons. The train started Friday evening from near the plutonium factory at La Hague, where spent nuclear fuels are reprocessed.

About 20 kilometres from Gorleben the Castor trains will be put on to 11-axle low-loader truck trailers. Activists will try to delay that with a sit-down blockade.

Already on Friday there were demonstrations in Lüchow, the administrative centre of the county that contains Gorleben. At the earliest on Monday the Castor trains are expected to reach the dump, a concrete hall already containing 68 containers.

Last year 16,000 police were assigned throughout Germany to guard the transport, 10,000 of them in Lower Saxony, the state in which Gorleben lies. Each transport to Gorleben causes policing costs of about 50 million euros. Aware that they can’t prevent them, activists say they aim to make them as expensive as possible as a wake-up call.

Gorlebeners fear that a partly explored, leaky saltmine near the present surface storage hall will become Germany’s permanent waste repository. Under an agreement with power companies, the previous German government of Social Democrats and Greens, exploration of the salt deposit was suspended in 2001. The present coalition of Conservatives and Social Democrats has left open whether and when exploration will continue.

Gorleben critics argue that the salt is unsafe for nuclear storage but fear that it will remain the preferred site because the power companies have already invested millions there.

Environment Minister, Sigmar Gabriel, a Social Democrat, has again called for an open-ended debate on a final repository. He said people in the region were protesting because they had the impression that Gorleben is predetermined as the final dump.

The waste from processing spent fuel from German power stations has been fused into 336 glass containers. Each of the 400-kg containers holds 56 kg of nuclear waste from 1.3 tonnes of fuel. Areva has said after this transport, 70 per cent of the German waste processed in France would be back in Germany.

Areva says from 1973 to 2005 5,465 tonnes of spent fuel was taken from Germany to La Hague for processing. Return transports of the highly radioactive remains began in 1996. Three more La Hague-Gorleben return transports are planned from 2007 to 2010.

Castor train diary

Sunday, 12 November 02:54 am Castor train train sighted at 2.39 am in Melsungen, south of Kassel. + + + + + Castor train train sighted 2.20 am in Bebra, headed for Kassel + + + + + Castor train train stopped from 1:40 to 1:50 am in Hünfeld, headed for Bebra. + + + + + 2:16 In Lüneburg the info point "Anna und Arthur" was stormed by four Nazis, causing damage. Police took down a complaint. Call for more people to come to the point for safety’s sake. + + + 1:19 Castor train train ran through Fulda. + + + + + Castor train train ran through Flieden, shortly before Fulda, at 01:03 am. + + + + + Castor train train sighted at 00:17 in Hanau- Wolfgang, at 00:33 in Gellenhausen and at 00:43 south of Steinau gesehen, continuing on towards Fulda. + + + + + 00:55 Warning vigil continues on the square outside Göttingen station. Soup and hot drinks are provided. + + + + + The Castor train ran through Gelnhausen, behind hinter. At 0:30 am. + + + A lost police weapon was handed back shortly after midnight ceremoniously and thriller-like to the policeman who owns it. Any amount of police were on hand. + + + + + The Castor train ran through Kahl at 00:03.

Saturday, 11 November 23:01 Castor train’s third forced stop in Germany. Previous ones at -Kranichstein. + + + + + 23:58 A lost police pistol is found. But the honest finders only want to hand it back with media present. + + + + + The Castor train-Zug is running again since 23:03, heading from Darmstadt to Aschaffenburg + + + + + A warning vigil begins on the square outside Göttingen railway station at 22h. The mood is good. Not many police. Poster walls and banners. Flyers handed to travellers. Police are putting up barriers in the station building. + + + + + Activist paramedics report two people with head injuries, one with a foot fracture, one with a split lip and probably fractured finger. Two people needed hospital treatment. + + + + + The Castor train is stopped in Darmstadt-Kranichstein + + + + + At 22:37 the train ran through Darmstadt-Kranichstein + + + + + In scuffles in the village of Metzingen near Gorleben, a policeman has lost his weapon. Police are scouring a paddock with torches. + + + + + A police encirclement of demonstrators in Metzingen has been disbanded. + + + + + In Camp Hitzacker the bands One Soul from Hamburg, Mao from Herford, Splint from the local area and Total Konfus start to perform a concert. + + + + + Police have closed off Metzingen in a wide arc around the village, locking in several hundred people. About 1.5 km outside are police vehicles. Clearing vehicles and water cannon are also placed. Straw bales are burning on the road. + + + + + The Castor train rolls through Biblis, site of two nuclear power stations, at 22:08. + + + + + At 21:40 the Castor train ran through the major city of Mannheim, now accompanied by four to five helicopters, two of which carry police squads. + + + + + Train began running again at 21:20, but is still outside Mannheim. + + + + + The situation at the Metzingen info point has relaxed somewhat. One arrest was made there. + + + + + Situation escalates in Metzingen, police squads storming into the info point, chasing specific individuals. + + + + + Several people standing on the railway track at Oftersheim. The train is stopped. + + + + + + + + + Police marshalling forces in Metzingen. Massively and violently they clear the way. + + + + + Directly by the railway station in Witzenhausen a warning vigil begins at 17,00, starting with 15 people, but growing all the time. Police assign a helicopter and about twice as many police as protesters to guard the vigil. A pavilion offers a brazier to warm up at, hot tea and soup. Despite uncomfortable weather, the mood is good, with music and good talking. + + + + + The Castor train comprises in this order two red diesel locomotives, six passenger cars, 12 Castor wagons, six passenger cars, two more red diesel locomotives. No advance train is running with it at this point. + + + + + The Castor train has stopped in Oftersheim ahead of Mannheim + + + + + The Castor train was briefly held up in Stutensen. It passed Wiesenthal, south of Mannheim, at 20:10. + + + + + At 19.15 the train passed Karlsruhe. + + + + + Police block the trucking route. In the attempt to confiscate a wheel loader on the dyke at the village of Laase and move oit out of the way, police cause a traffic accident with a tractor. Local police had to come in to take down details. The result was a huge tailback. + + + + + The train left Wörth station at 17:55 Uhr, running on the route Karlsruhe - Mannheim – Darmstadt. + + + + + 400 people have gathered in Metzingen, warming themselves up at burning straw bales. Pictures The mood is good. + + + + + Police have stopped access to a lantern march with roadblocks but alternative routes are available. + + + + + About 100 people take part in a warning vigil at Wörth station. + + + + + Locomotives and accompanying personnel are exchanged in Wörth. The route continues via Karlsruhe - Mannheim - Darmstadt + + + + + Police have closed off all access to Dannenberg, where the waste will be offloaded onto trucks, and are not letting any tractors through. + + + + + Castor train arrives at Wörth at 17:15. Police opened the way for fire brigades. These fires are put out. + + + + + A barricade in Gorleben continues to burn. Firefighters can’t get through to it. + + + + + At 16.00 the Castor train passed Lauterbourg/Straßburg into Germany. + + + + + Demonstrators have lit small fires on the road outside the waste dump. Police try to put them out. + + + + + Scuffles outside the dump. Small road barricades are put up. + + + + + 16:22 The rally in Gorleben ends. + + + + + 15:49 In Hoenheim near Strasbourg French nuclear opponents demonstrate at a railway crossing. + + + + + 15:47 Despite starting rain the mood at a Gorleben protest rally is good. + + + + + The train is now accompanied by a helicopter. + + + + + 15:20 Warning vigil near Wörth station. A demonstration on the track is planned for when the waste train crosses the border. In Wörth about 25 activists demonstrate on a road bridge, holding up a banner. + + + + + Activists caused the first delay of the Castor train in Normandy with straw dolls and banners. Ten activists were on site, five were arrested. Police said two more actions took place later. Nets were said to have been thrown on the track. + + + + + Latest estimates put the number of demonstrators at 6,000 and growing, with 200 tractors as well. + + + + + 14:59 Activists claim that the train at this stage is already three hours behind schedule. Locomotives are to be exchanged at Conflans. Police are deliberately spreading wrong information. + + + + + 14:54 Radio reports the train an hour and 40 minutes late. About 600 police are guarding the route in southern Palatinate. + + + + + The Castor train was at Metz at 14:08 + + + + + Castor train two hours late. + + + + + Around 2 am tractors in the village of Pudripp are confiscated and transported away. The road to Uelzen was reopened. + + + + + Police massed on the road Lüchow/Bellahn. + + + + + At 1:25 am the Castor train was blocked in France near Serqueux. + + + + + Train ran through Sotteville-lès-Rouen Triage Mixte at 00:56:34. + + + + + Attorneys called in take the view that police have no leghal basis for taking down identity details. + + + + + All tractors are confiscated in Pudripp. Farmers’ identity details are taken down. + + + + + Blockade in Metzingen disbanded.

Friday, 10 November
19.47 12 containers of highly radioactive waste on a train start rolling on time towards Gorleben in Germany from Valogne (La Hague) in northern France. It is German waste reprocessed in the La Hague plutonium factory. The train is made up in the following sequence: 1 locomotive, 2 passenger cars of riot police, 12 Castor containers, 1 passenger car of riot police, 1 locomotive.


31 Oct As in previous years, police are again sorting between “good” and “bad” journalists. Photographers who’ve followed events for years have been told their press ID’s aren’t acceptable. + + + + + 31 Oct Demonstrators dressed as clowns encounter police squads on the Castor rail route in a forest. The clowns tease the police in various ways and the police look helpless in dealing with that. + + + + + 31 Oct Bremen activists have hung a 50 sq metre anti-nuclear banner over the entrance to the main railway station. Two weeks ago they stuck “Gorleben is everywhere” signs over official town entry signs. + + + + + + Police are again setting up “special law” zones for themselves, erecting barriers at all railway crossings between Leitstade and Hitzacker and allowing people only to cross only on foot, singly and after taking down their personal data. This despite a recent court verdict ruling such police actions illegal. + + + + + Boosting anti-nuclear argumentation comes news about a big money-making alarmist subculture in the USA alleging Al Qaida plans to simultaneously explode atom bombs in several US cities. The propaganda is tolerated, if not promoted by the government and ultra-conservative circles. + + + + On 30 Oct about 180 people gathered at the railway track in Göhrde Forest bringing stones to lay along it, including a three-tonne one with an X chiselled into it by an artist. X is the sign of the anti-nuclear resistance. A police line attempted to stop people crossing the track. But in the dark a convoy of tractors and other vehicles got through and paid a visit to a horse farm housing 70 mounted police and 35 of their horses. + + + + + 30 Oct call by Autononous Block, the most militant demonstrators, to come from all over Germany to the Gorleben demonstration on 11 November. + + + + + The Lower Saxony state government warns of “heightened danger through potential perpetrators of violence”. It says autonomous groups are calling for militant actions in the Internet and on placards. The government warned of “unbearable costs” for Lower Saxony of the police deployment. The interior minister said the football world championship and neo-Nazi marches had pushed the state police to their limit. + + + + + Activists have hung X’s and banners in trees along the federal road at Dahlenburg ( ) and have written anti-nuclear slogans on the road surface. Police tried to interfere with the protesters but found no grounds. They took down their particulars, anyway. The Lüneburg activists meet regularly at Anna’s and Arthur’s . + + + + + Inestimable damage to people and the environment must be feared from the flooding of the Cigar Lake uranium mine in Canada. Activists point to similarities with the salt mine in Gorleben they are convinced will be declared the final waste repository. + + + + + “Our gates and doors are open to the Resistance” says a sign at the entrance to the village of Metzingen. It’s a response to the declaration of large-scale off-limits areas along the Castor route by authorities. The repeated declarations are the subject of a complaint by the Gorleben Resistance to the German supreme court. In the coming action days Metzingen will be a “resistance camp” and social centre. A local steel sculptor has made and donated a cup for the “promotion of resistance skills”. + + + + + 27 Oct In Lüneburg police hold a young woman for two hours after an ID checking action. The woman is in the Castor resistance records and was handed for interrogation to state security police. She was handcuffed while waiting for these officials. Two security men interrogated her about friends, people she lives with and other contacts. They confiscated a map. + + + + + 16 Oct An angry sun sprayed on to the back of a traffic sign upset police near Lüneburg. Two women were suspected and stopped from driving on in their car. Their details were taken down and their car was searched. The police computer had both as Castor activists. Both women were body-searched. Finally a black marker pen was found and confiscated. + + + + + 28 Oct Demos announced in Lüneburg for 4, 7 and 10 Nov + + + + + Call for 4 Nov demo at fault-prone nuclear reactor at Brunsbüttel, said to be less afe than the one that nearly had a meltdown in Sweden. + + + + + Call for 4 Nov demo in Biblis, location of Germany’s most fault-prone nuclear station. + + + + + 7 Nov anti-nuclear film evening Uni campus Mainz. + + + + + 11 Nov Castor Alarm! Info point Woerth/Rh. + + + + + 27 Oct “General decree” placards put up all over Lüchow-Dannenberg county by the “Free Wendland Republic” banning all police presence in the area. It’s a mirrored response to a “general decree” by the authorities banning many protest activities because from them allegedly emanate great dangers. The protesters’ decree says it’s nuclear energy that’s causing the dangers. + + + + + Anti-Castor action sites:,,, ,, ,,, dates of actions, + + + + + 27 Oct Police declare a no-go area along the rail and road rote from Lüneburg to Gorleben. Police say they expect road and rail blockades and disruption of rail and road traffic. The ban is from 11 to 21 November. The banned strip is 50 metres either side of road and rail. + + + + + 25 Oct Police are taking down road signs in the county indicating town and village names. Locals had been blacking out the names. Welcome in the Nowhere! + + + + + 24 Oct Groups up and down the country have been mobilising for weeks against the Castor transport. + + + + + Actions in the run-up: · Workshop of the clownarmy from 26-28.10 Meuchefitz · 28.10 Rally and demo through Uelzen · 28.10 Oldies sit at the train offloading station in Dannenberg · 28.10 Taking places in Göhrde Forest · 4.11 Demo at Brunsbüttel nuclear power station · 4.11 Demo at Biblis nuclear power station · 5.11 Bicycle demo Lüneburg · 6.11 Night stroll in Leitstade · 7.11 Fire and music in Hitzacker on the anniversary of the day French activist Sébastien Briat was killed ba a Castor train · 10.11 Pupils’ demo in Lüchow · 10.11 Demo Bremen · 11.11 Demo Gorleben · 11.11 Lantern walk Metzingen · 12.11 Sitdown blockade in Dannenberg · 12.11 Rallye in Göhrde Forest Organisation There will be camps and sleeping place info centres · Hitzacker – Resistance Camp by the lake · Metzingen – The village as camp (barns camp) Info points/sleeping places · Lüneburg The infocafè "Anna & Arthur" will be open again through the Castor transport days. Meals, warm drinks and infos will be offered. · Dahlenburg – Info point at Oldendorfer Brücke · Dannenberg, Essowiese – Info point and sleeping place list + + + + + 25 Oct Near Lüneburg police rolled out NATO razor wire, three rows deep, along the rail track. + + + + + 25 Oct Call to coordination meeting in Gorleben. + + + + + Call to demo on 11 Nov in Winsen on Luhe. One of the possible Castor routes is Nienburg - Verden - Rotenburg (Wümme) - Buchholz - Maschen - Winsen - Lüneburg. Bus to Gorleben laid on, fare 10 euros. + + + + + Call to demo in Lüchow on 10 Nov by school children under the motto "I dont go to school today – for a non-radiocative life for all”. Pupils intend to ignore the order of the local authority to attend classes that day, arguing that their duty to fight for a better environment is higher than the duty to attend school. Call to annoy the official who ordered attendance. + + + + + Call to a meeting on 2 Nov to discuss Castor blocking possibilities. + + + + + Call to a meeting of demo first aid providers on 2 November. + + + + + 23 Oct The Lüchow Dannenberg Citizens Environment Initiative (BI) puts out word that this year's Castor transport of nuclear waste to Gorleben will be brought forward a day from 11 to 10 November. The tenth such shipment will bring another 12 highly radioactive waste caskets from the French plutonium factory in La Hague. According to the BI, the Germans and French argued about the date. Whereas German Railways (DB) wanted the train to roll out of the loading station of Valognes on 10 November, the French were strictly opposed because of increased railway traffic ahead of a national holiday on 11 November. + + + + + 23 Oct Busy mobilising for weeks in Bremen. “Gorleben is everywhere” pasted over place name signs, banners in trees, leaflets to passers-by, call to 10 Nov demo in Bremen. + + + + + 14 Oct Lüneburg Casto action group held a trainstopping day with workshops on nuclear policy, Castor transports, legal aid, non-violent action training, tree climbing. One group moved through the city centre putting into practice some of what they’d learnt in a communication guerrilla workshop. House walls were graffitied with chalk. Police took down names. Positive public response to the actions. Call to other actions: 5 Nov bicycle demo, 7 Nov remembrance watch with lanterns on death day of Sébastien Briat, 13 Nov on the rails. + + + + + Demo in Uelzen 20 Oct + + + + + During the night from 12 to 13 Oct three metal claws were attached to the power lines of the railways. A group calling itself “Counter Pressure” claimed the action in connection with the coming Castor transport. It the past such hooks have caused delays of hours in rail traffic because they ripped the power lines down as locomotives hit them. + + + + + 6 Oct A radio transmission tower in the county used by police during Castor transports was found felled. Police say they’re “investigating in all directions”. The damage amounts to at least 30,000 euros. Also, a 60cm deep hole 15 cm across was found drilled in a road near the village of Grippel. Unofficially police sources spoke of preparations for a chain-on action. In connection with the hole police searched through farm buildings in Langendorf, saying their suspicions against a person had hardened. + + + + + 1 Oct Exhibition “The Gorleben Feeeling” opened in Berlin. + + + + + 29 Sept. The giant German transnational energy corporation RWE rekindles the debate over Germany's plans to phase out nuclear power by applying to extend the license of one of its oldest nuclear power stations. Social Democrats, junior partners to conservatives in the coalition government, reject the plan. + + + + + 11 Sept Anti-nuclear activists block the entry to the Brunsbüttel nuke. + + + + + 30 Aug A railcar carrying spent nuclear fuel derailed in La-Ferté-Saint-Aubin near Orléans (about 140 km south of Paris). Official statements claimed there was no danger. + + + + + 29 Aug Almost 10,000 people flooded into the little Spanish village of Peque de Carballeda to protest against plans to dump nuclear waste. The 200 villagers were as surprised as the organisers at the massive turnout.

Diet S. - borrowing from various activists


we will remember them

12.11.2006 17:31

Sebastien Briat was not sucked under the train. He was murdered!


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