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Home > IV Online magazine > 2010 > IV427 - August 2010 > COP15 Activists Facing Trials

Climate Change

COP15 Activists Facing Trials

Wednesday 25 August 2010

In December 2009 during the climate summit in Copenhagen, tens of
thousands of protesters gathered to call for climate justice and
challenge the ongoing UN negotiations. Instead of welcoming these
popular calls for action, the Danish state responded with brutal
police force and intense repression of protestors.

Around 2000 people were preemptively arrested at legal demonstrations, and were held in custody for up to 24 hours. Approximately 30 people were detained for up to a month, of which four people go to trial this autumn for more serious charges.

These people are accused by the state of planning
violence against police, planning vandalism, and serious disturbance
of public order. Some of these fabricated charges are drawn from the
Danish terror package and the penalties are strengthened by the new
Danish anti-protester ("hoodlum") laws introduced just prior to the
COP 15. Although the charges they face are unfounded, they can
potentially result in years of imprisonment. The first court cases
against Natasha Verco and Noah Weiss are happening in Copenhagen on
August 24th, 25th, and 31st.

The Danish based Climate Collective has called for international
solidarity with the accused, both in Denmark and internationally to
protest these false charges.

Laura Jørgensen from the Climate Collective explains: "Natasha and
Noah, who are going to court in August, were both arrested almost
before the summit started and are not accused of having participated
in any of the demonstrations or actions. Still they are both charged
with planning acts which neither the police nor the prosecutor can
clarify what they are or when they should have taken place. Such
accusations are completely impossible to defend yourself against." She
continues: "The coming trials are not just about innocent people
risking conviction, but a continuation of a system of massive
repression that anyone who dares to speak out and organize against the
powerful is met with by the state. It is clear that the state is
trying to scare people from demonstrating and organizing themselves
politically. The attempt to judge randomly selected individuals for an
entire movement’s collective actions is totally absurd and is clearly
an attack on the right to protest and criticize the existing system.
It is important that we don’t give in to this criminalization and
repression but continue the fight."

The Climate Collective can be contacted at: +45 50 58 87 51
To read more about the trials see.