plaque commemorating Noureddin
decorating the monument
to the beach
nous sommes tous
The Calais region authorities tell us that they are "welcoming the world" for the olympic games. People arriving from Sudan, Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Palestine, Mali, Kurdistan, Syria, Somalia, Iraq, Lybia, Albania, Pakistan, Tunisia, Egypt have all been welcomed ... with a closed border, arrests, beatings, detention centres, and constant harassment.
The day's events included:
-- Installing new commemorative street plaques to remember Noureddin and Ismael.
-- A counter-olympic procession through the town with about sixty people, including refugees of many different communities. We had hoped to stop at the town hall to add a new monument to the mayor's collection of giant sweetie-shaped sculptures decorated in national colours. But the march was blocked at the town hall by police lines. Instead we added our new sweetie to the monument in the square in front of the town hall.
-- The celebratory procession continued, taking the road all the way, through the town centre, with lots of people out in the street, and a very positive welcome. The cops followed en masse but didn't interfere.
-- The main athletic events were held in the counter-olympic park (also known as Parc Richelieu), a picnic, music, and a running race with the added obstacle of "border guards" and "riot police" trying to block the contestants.
-- Then the aquatic games at the beach. Diving, acrobatics, ball games, and an evening swimming event in the channel (joined by police speedboats).
See also Indymedia Lille: http://lille.indymedia.org/spip.php?article27337