Press conference, 09/06/2018

Invitation to the common press conference, to the beginning of the tree felling, today at 3 pm
Kerpen-Buir, September 06th, 2018. This morning RWE started felling trees in the Hambach Forest. In the early hours of the morning a large crowd of police entered the forest, at half past ten the first tree was felled. Thus, the RWE Group and the police, commanded by the NRW state government, create irrevocable facts even before the official cutting period. With the so called Day X, a nationwide mass mobilization begins today. Thousands of people will engage for the conservation of the forest during the days to come with demonstrations, sitting blocks and forest walks.

The local initiative Buirer für Buir, activists of the occupation in the Hambach Forest, Ende Gelände and the Aktion Unterholz invite today to a joint press conference. It will take place at 3:00 pm in the Protestant Gemeindehaus (parish hall), Bahnstraße 42 in 50170 Kerpen-Buir. Then we drive together to the Hambach Forest, where we are available for interviews.

Today’s clearing work again sharpen the conflict over the Hambach Forest. The Federal Environment Ministry, the unions of police (GdP) and services (Ver.di), local residents and environmentalists demanded in recent weeks a coal moratorium and a deforesting stop. The Berlin coal commission threatens to fail, several members announced in the event of cuttings their exit from the panel. Nevertheless Mr. Reul, Minister of the Interior, ordered on behalf of the state government a large-scale police campaign, in order to enforce tree felling for RWE.

On Sunday, September 9, the initiative Buirer for Buir is calling for a demonstration in connection with a walk in the forest.
The occupiers of the forest are preparing to prevent the evacuation of over 60 tree houses during several weeks.
Ende Gelände announces blockades of coal infrastructure at the Hambach opencast mine on October 06 and October 25-29.
Aktion Unterholz will stop the destruction of the forest from tomorrow, Friday, 07-09-2018, with civil disobedience.

Representatives of the broad spectrum of protests comment on today’s developments as follows: “The escalation of the conflict by RWE represents a deep cut in our quality of life for the village of Buir. In addition to the forest and our neighboring villages, we also lose our peace. The Hambach Forest, for us a symbol of a future-oriented society, now threatens to become a memorial to the destruction of our future. We feel left alone by those responsible in the federal and state governments – forgotten,” says Andreas Büttgen of the local initiative Buirers for Buir.

“We defend the forest against RWE and Minister of the Interior Reul. In the trees we fight for climate justice and against capitalism. It will not be easy to get out of the forest,” says activist Momo of the occupations in the Hambach Forest.

“With the evictions and the felling, RWE clearly transgresses a red line for the climate. It is a scandal that the state government protects this way corporate profits and not the climate. We call for the carbon phase out, as an immediate measure of global climate justice,” said Karolina Drzewo, press officer of the alliance Ende Gelände.

“The destruction of the Hambach Forest is intolerable. We will therefore prevent the eviction and clearance of police and RWE from tomorrow on with actions of mass civil disobedience. By this form of action, we take our future into our own hands”, says Anna Schönberg of Aktion Unterholz.

Contact:
For background discussions, interviews or any questions, we are always happy to help.

Buirer für Buir: Andreas Büttgen, +49 173 5146141, info@nullbuirerfuerbuir.de
Waldbesetzung: Momo, press_hambachforest@nullriseup.net
Ende Gelände: Karolina Drzewo, +49 152 04560800, presse@nullende-gelaende.org, ende-gelaende.org
Aktion Unterholz: Anna Schönberg, +49 1775944678, presse_unterholz@nullriseup.net, aktion-unterholz.org

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