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Police raid Stuttgart 21 rail project opponents

The Local · 7 Jul 2011, 10:45

Published: 07 Jul 2011 10:45 GMT+02:00

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The raids were in connection with a demonstration held on June 20 against the multi-billion-euro project. Protesters stormed a building site and occupied the site for five hours, allegedly damaging fences and construction equipment.

The office of the group Parkschützer, as well as the home of spokesman Matthias von Herrmann, were searched for video footage and information about potential witnesses to an alleged attack on a policeman that took place during the demonstration, officials said.

According to police and Germany's national rail operator Deutsche Bahn, the demonstration caused €1.5 million in damage. An undercover police officer allegedly suffered injuries to the head and neck caused by punching and kicking.

The state prosecutor is investigating the incident and may lay charges of causing bodily harm and attempted robbery.

Police were searching for video footage that may show the alleged assault, as well as evidence of who might have witnessed the incident, officials said.

The Parkschützer group showed video material at a recent press conference but have not handed it over to police, officials said. Von Hermann and other possible witnesses also ignored a police summons, forcing police to carry out the raids, they said.

Von Herrmann said it was an “absolute affront” for the police to claim that Parkschützer had refused to hand over material. The video that the group showed two weeks ago at its press conference was available for everyone to see on the website Youtube, he said.

“This is a specific manoeuvre to portray the Parkschützer as criminals,” he said.

Story continues below…

Stuttgart 21 consists of a massive construction effort, involving rebuilding the city’s main train station underground and turning it around 90 degrees, as well as laying 57 kilometres of new tracks. The aim is to make the city a major European rail hub.

The official price tag is capped at €4.5 billion but some media reports suggest the true cost may be higher. Opponents have mounted massive protests against the project over the past year, calling it too expensive and unnecessary.

DAPD/The Local/djw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

11:07 July 7, 2011 by Traveler33
When this project is completed it will greatly help increase the economic activity in Stuttgart brining in new business and a vast amount of new travelers. This can only be a good thing for a city and something people should want.

It should also be noted that the people of Stuttgart voted for this to happen so it should be no surprise that the local government is moving forward with it. If people were really that much against it then they should have done a better job campaigning against it when it was on the ballot. The fact is the city and the state would lose Billions of Euros if they decide not to finish this project.
11:50 July 7, 2011 by pepsionice
For the opposition folks....a lesson here. When the Red Army Faction finally reached maximum strength....the cops changed their strategy and went aggressive. In a matter of weeks, the RAF was being disassembled. If you've been a major opponent of Stuttgart-21....you'd best prepare for an arrest and detention of several weeks. Your court case will be laid out with various telephone conversations that were recorded and witnesses who flipped on you. Your future? Expect a year in prison if you did any serious harm. Want a job after prison? Try to explain to the future employer how you spent the last year. It's a lousy way to end a productive life....over some stupid rail project. You would end up living in Mom's apartment for the rest of your life and wondering where you went wrong.
14:20 July 7, 2011 by JDee
the last state election was a vote on the project, in Stuttgart central

45% Green 'against proejct'

22% CDU 'for the project'

and this in a traditionally CDU demographic...
15:21 July 7, 2011 by Traveler33
It doesn't matter what the last election vote results were. It may have been an anti-stuttgart 21 vote but regardless, the people voted a while back for this to happen and it is going to happen. Unless the people of this state want to lose Billions of Euros by cancelling the program and loss of jobs it is creating they need to just get over it.

Go plant a new tree to replace the one getting chopped down if that makes you feel good but get over it. It's going to happen so just move forward.
15:45 July 7, 2011 by trash head
> Go plant a new tree to replace the one getting chopped down if that makes you feel good but get over it.

The protests against S21 have nothing to do with the nature.

Its abt the money which the city have to pay for this project, money, which was needed in other corners of Stuttgart.

Stuttgarts city budget ("Stadthaushalt") is not only empty, it has big debts already. This is what the ppla raged against. Against a project planned by the DB and paid with at least 60 % from tax money. 60 % also, when the project becomes more expensive. And like all projects of this size, it will not only become 2x of its original price.

And you talk abt some trees...
15:59 July 7, 2011 by JDee
"It doesn't matter what the last election vote results were"

not in fascist regimes anyway!
18:22 July 7, 2011 by neunElf
The last election results were hardly a repudiation of the CDU;

CDU 39%

Greens 24.2%

To extrapolate out of those figures some massive groundswell of anti-Stuttgart 21 support is quite a leap in logic.
20:18 July 7, 2011 by Englishted
Never mind the last election next time, can I vote against more European expansion and a ban on comments by german-guardian.
02:10 July 8, 2011 by vonSchwerin
Maybe the opponents should take up a collection and buy the building or the grounds around it. You know: Put up or shut up. Put your money where your mouth is.
12:58 July 8, 2011 by JDee
I'm sure the opponents would and could easily buy-out the existing Hbf but that option isn't open to them. Remember the project is not really about train stations, it is about releasing the land where the existing tracks lead into the city so that they can build shopping malls, office blocks and some token apartments. Like in any of these situations it would be possible for the public to club together and buy the land to use as a park or some other community ammenity, but then the politicians cannot cash-in by selling to their cronies in the private sector. The usual excuse will be that selling the land for development will raise revenue for the city by way of future tax collections. Of course this would be true if it wasn't for the fact that Stuttgart central and the surround metropolitan areas is already littered with hundreds of empty commercial buildings which raise no tax and many have stood empty for at least the 6 years that I have been visiting here. Any further commercial development will just displace firms creating further empty office buildings and shops somewhere else to the detriment of the other owners, the local environment and the public purse. The problem with these 'field of dreams' type developments is that it is too easy for the developers to externalise the costs and risks to us, the public suckers. If the building is successful they make money, but they won't pay the tax on the other empty building where their tennants have relocated from. If the building stands empty they still get to right off the cost of construction and other standing losses against revenue they collect on other buildings so it just reduces their tax bill and they do not lose profit.
19:26 July 8, 2011 by osas1212
I want it I am for it and will be glad when it is done. The opponents are too disruptive and resorting to criminal acts. This cannot be tolerated in any fashion. True, the final cost will be higher. These protesters cause massive delays in the traffic and bus schedules and on Mondays especially, that is really all they are accomplishing. I am so tired of seeing their stupid pins and stickers on everything that will need to be cleaned up, every story about them always includes the damage they have done to thos or that. They are inflating the cost themselves. Do they really care about the money not a chance!
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