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Czech Rep: Klinika social centre mounts eviction resistance

After two years of back and forth, police and private security have been sent in to clear out the autonomous squatted centre, which has been an important cultural and community building since it opened in Prague in 2014.

Bailiffs arrived early this morning at the centre, which Freedom previously reported on in 2017 when Prague’s municiple court first paved the way for an eviction

Defenders of the space mounted a resistance and are still updating on the situation at the time of writing — videos can be found at the Klinika facebook page. The non-violent resistance pulled sizeable numbers and forced bailiffs to temporarily pause the eviction during the morning. In a statement prior to the assault, the Klinika collective wrote:

“We are calling SŽDC (the state railway company) to stop the absurd violent eviction and to return to discussions with the members of the Klinika collective and leaders of the capital city. There are 7,000 empty houses in Prague and we want at least one of them to be a non-commercial social and culture center.”

The centre, which was opened on the site of an abandoned clinic, has been open for the last four years and has had numerous legal showdowns with both local government and the legal owners SŽDC, which have been leading today’s eviction — but had thought that an undertaking by the city to take over the building for use as a social centre would forestall such efforts.

Markéta Juřicová, a member of the Klinika collective, said: “Managers of SŽDC (state railway company) are lying when they claim that they are forced to evict the building by court. It’s their own decision. Municipal district Pague 3 nor the whole Capital City don’t want Klinika to be evicted.

Jakub Ort from ASC Klinika said: “There are no reasons for leaving the house. In the case of eviction, the building will be empty for months and years and it will dilapidated. There is even a threat of demolition. Moreover, it is winter and there are people in the house who have no place to go”.

SŽDC has said it wants the site clear for building work, however critics have pointed out that works are unlikely to begin before the spring of 2020, meaning that even if the firm intends to build, the building will be a ruin for at least the next year.

Some background info taken from Trespass. The third issue of Trespass Journal is available now.

Pics from Klinika

klinika [at] 451 [dot] cz

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