To: Procura di Torino
Call in solidarity with the students arrested the 6th of July in Italy
In the night between the 5th and the 6th of July, 21 students were arrested in a sweeping police operation. They were charged with being involved in the mobilization of the 19th of May in Turin against the G8 University Summit. On that day more than 10,000 undergraduate and PhD students, as well as precarious researchers, took public voice in a huge demonstration to express another time – after the mobilizations of last fall – their opposition to the dismantling of the public university.
These charges are not usually cause for preventive arrest, almost two months after the events. There is a clear disproportion between the supposed charges and the use of a heavy juridical tool. This disproportion risks erasing democratic principles, which must on the contrary be reaffirmed. The twenty-one arrested – fifteen are in jail, six under house arrest – are young students, almost all with clean records.
We express our indignation at the disproportion of this act for people who have simply demonstrated their dissent. This has occurred at a time when young students and researchers are more and more worried about the lack of guarantees for the future and the uncertain destiny of the public university.
We want to affirm that we are on the side of freedom of thought and freedom to demonstrate dissent. We think that it is not acceptable to manage every protest as a police problem. We want to affirm again that the university is a space of freedom, confrontation and the production of knowledge. Through these arrests it is not possible to solve the contradictions and the problems of the public university.