• Germany's news in English

'Blockupy' protests paralyse Frankfurt

The Local · 16 May 2012, 11:24

Published: 16 May 2012 11:24 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The camp was peacefully cleared by midday on Wednesday, with police carrying the protesters away after a court had ruled they had to leave the area surrounding the Euro sign in front of the European Central Bank (ECB).

Around 40 groups had designated the long weekend one of action to protest the power of banks and “the Europe-wide impoverishment policies”. The groups, which included trade unions, the globalisation critics Attac and various left-wing initiatives adopted the slogan “Blockupy” for the weekend.

The protest was supposed to kick off on Thursday, a bank holiday, when the plan was to occupy central squares, and on Friday a blockade of the ECB was planned. A court had disallowed many of the planned demonstrations, although a rally on Saturday was granted permission. It was expected that many protesters would try to blockade the banks regardless and fears of violence rose during the early part of the week.

By Tuesday evening metro stations had been closed and the Commerzbank said it was going to close its two sky scrapers, while the German Central Bank confirmed on Wednesday it had held a meeting of ECB executives on Tuesday – a day earlier than planned.

And the farewell ceremony for departing ECB executive board member Jose Manuel Gonzalez-Paramo, due to be held in a city centre luxury hotel on Wednesday, was moved to a venue in the countryside.

“Commerzbank branches located in the security zone of the Frankfurt inner city will at least partly and for some time be closed,” a spokeswoman for the company told Wednesday’s Handelsblatt newspaper.

Story continues below…

Helaba bank told its staff to take Friday off or work from home to avoid having to come into the city, while the state-owned KfW bank gave its staff similar advice and was expecting less than 20 percent of its 2,500 workers to show up, the paper said.

The Local/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

12:43 May 16, 2012 by catjones
Or, to put it another way: the police cannot be trusted to protect its citizens.
14:33 May 16, 2012 by DOZ
Free Education for all. Down with Discriminating Education Practices of the Capitalists.
16:24 May 16, 2012 by Craptastic
Yes, free education, but then you have to pay us top dollar to be professors. Oh, and by "free", we mean that productive taxpayers should fund our desire to earn degrees in underwater basket weaving. Such a workable model. I wonder why no one ever thought of it!

The police did their job. People who wanted free and unfettered access to public property were not frightened away by folks who can't be bothered with the true mechanisms of democracy, permits.

When a number of persons conduct any joint enterprise according to rules and thus restrict their liberty, those who have submitted to those restrictions when required have a right to a similar submission from those who have benefited by their submission. - H.L.A. Hart on what constitutes "fair play"
19:09 May 16, 2012 by vonSchwerin

Why the attack on professors? If someone goes to the trouble to earn his Promotion (Dr.phil., Dr.rer.nat., etc.) and his Habilitation (Dr.habil.), he should be paid a decent wage. He is a highly trained specialist. Additionally, I doubt many of the Blockupy protesters have worked hard enough to earn a Habilitation.

Also, in Germany -- unlike in the USA -- professors do not have the universal reputation for being leftists. There are plenty of CDU-affiliated professors, even in the humanities and social sciences. Check out the Kuratorium of the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung for some examples.
19:33 May 16, 2012 by MeinSchwanz
@ vonSchwerin

'If someone goes to the trouble to earn his Promotion (Dr.phil., Dr.rer.nat., etc.) and his Habilitation (Dr.habil.), he should be paid a decent wage. He is a highly trained specialist.'

Free Wages For All. Down with discriminating Wage Practices of the Capitalists.
20:34 May 16, 2012 by finanzdoktor
@ von Schwerin: At face value, Mein Schwanz probably hasn't gotten of his/her namesake, and taken the initiative to accomplish much. Instead, he/she thinks those who work hard and achieve much, even if from a lowly background, should continue to pay for those who do not. So, just take their response(s) with a grain of salt, so to speak, or better yet, just ignore their ignorance.
21:08 May 16, 2012 by vonSchwerin

"Down with discriminating Wage Practices of the Capitalists"

Oh, I get it. What you really mean is "From each according to his ability, to each according to his need!" ("Jeder nach seinen Fähigkeiten, jedem nach seinen Bedürfnissen!")

What an original and functional idea you have.
20:22 May 18, 2012 by Craptastic
@ vonSchwerin:

I believe I was misunderstood. Let me clear it up: These people (non-professors) wants us to give them free education, but we still have to pay our profs top dollar. This just can't work. It has nothing to do with my acceptance that profs have value (they do), but rather that it is senseless to ask for a product for free then insist that the producer also get paid. The mathematics just don't add up.
18:45 May 19, 2012 by marcus anthony bynum
tuna stir- fry over whole- wheat vermicelli yield 6 servings serving size 1 cup... fish is both a delicious and nutritious meal option...
Today's headlines
Creepy clown scare spreads to Germany
Two of the clowns were apparently equipped with chainsaws. Photo: Pedro Pardo / AFP file picture

Police said Friday five incidents involving so-called scary clowns had occurred in two north German town, including one assailant who hit a man with a baseball bat, amid fears that Halloween could spark a rash of similar attacks.

Student fined for spying on women via their webcams
Photo: DPA

Student from Munich fined €1,000 for spying on 32 different computers, using their webcams to take photographs, or record their keyboard history.

This is how much startup geeks earn in Germany
Photo: DPA

A comprehensive new survey of 143 startup founders shows how much you are likely to be earning at a German startup, from entry level all the way up to sitting on the board.

Man dies after beating for peeing near Freiburg church
The Johannes Church in Freiburg. Photo Jörgens Mi/Wikipedia

A middle-aged man from southern Germany has died after being attacked by a group of men who took umbrage with the fact he was urinating in the vicinity of a church.

The Local List
Seven German celebrities with uncanny doppelgängers
Former Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit and actor Alec Baldwin. Photo: DPA; Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons

Check out these seven look-a-likes of well known German figures - we admit that some are more tenuous than others...

Israel seeks to buy three new German submarines: report
A Dolphin class submarine. Photo: DPA

Israel is seeking to buy three more advanced submarines from Germany at a combined price of €1.2 billion, an Israeli newspaper reported Friday.

Here’s where people live the longest in Germany
Photo: DPA

Germans down south seem to know the secret to a long life.

More Germans identify as LGBT than in rest of Europe
Photo: DPA

The percentage of the German population which identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is higher than anywhere else in Europe, according to a new study.

'Reichsbürger' pair attack police in Saxony-Anhalt
File photo: DPA.

A "Reichsbürger" and his wife attacked police officers on Thursday, just a day after another Reichsbürger fatally shot an officer in Bavaria.

Five things not to miss at the Frankfurt Book Fair
Photo: DPA

From consulting a book doctor to immersing yourself in an author's world with the help of virtual reality, here are five things not to miss at this week's Frankfurt Book Fair, the world's largest publishing event.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd