Second blockade wave of "Disarm Rheinmetall" in Kassel
After the successful blockade of the West plant of the Kassel-based arms manufacturer Krauss-Maffei Wegmann, activists of "Rheinmetall Entwaffnen" are now blocking the gates of the East plant. There will be another demonstration at 16 o'clock.
After activists of the "Rheinmetall Entwaffnen" [Disarm Rheinmetall] alliance in Kassel blocked the entrances and exits of the West-Plant of Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) in the early morning hours, a second wave of blockade has followed.
Since 9:45 a.m., the gates of the eastern plant of the armaments group have also been blocked. The activists are using inflatable cubes with a volume of several cubic meters as part of the blockade setup, and a self-built tank is also part of the action picture. With their action, the alliance demands a stop to the production and export of arms.
"War equipment from Kassel is in use worldwide. Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and Rheinmetall deliver to warring, often fascist and autocratic states. In Syria and northern Iraq, Erdogan and his terror regime are fighting the Kurds with German weapons, and in Yemen German exports are partly responsible for the worst humanitarian catastrophe of our time. The German government authorizes these exports and thus makes itself an accomplice. With our action today we want to herald the beginning of the end of the German war industry," said Adila Dilaram of the anti-militarist alliance "Rheinmetall Disarmament".
When the police tried to take employees out through a side entrance into the grounds, it was also spontaneously blocked. As a result, many employees had to turn back on their way to work. The blockades were peaceful on the part of the activists - only the police pushed and shoved to make room or to provoke.
National Socialism rearmed in Kassel
National Socialism was already rearmed from Kassel and even today Germany and the world are supplied with weapons technology from Kassel. This makes Kassel a hotspot of the German arms industry. Krauss-Maffei Wegmann produces the Leopard 2 and Puma tanks here, among others, and has supplied Qatar and Turkey in the past. Tanks planned, manufactured and maintained here are used in armed conflicts around the world. There they cause death, displacement and flight.
German corporations earn twice as much from business with death
"While Europe is walled in at its external borders, weapons continue to be supplied to states that break international law and commit crimes against the civilian population. This leads to people having to leave their homes. A large number of them remain in the region as internal refugees and continue to be potentially threatened. And the few who dare make their way to Europe are often repelled here with the same weapons from which they flee. So German corporations earn twice as much from business with death. We therefore call for open borders and the fight against the central cause of flight, war, by stopping arms production," said "Rheinmetall Disarm" activist Carola Palm.
Demonstration at 4 pm
The "Rheinmetall Disarmament" alliance was formed in 2018 following the Turkish attack on Afrin in northern Syria. As early as 2018, there was a protest camp and minor blockades at Rheinmetall's production site in Unterlüß. Last year, more than twice as many activists came and blocked access to the plant there for more than 24 hours. This year the camp was cancelled due to Corona pandemic and today's day of action in Kassel was planned. At 16 o'clock there will be another demonstration. Starting point is the Halitplatz.