2007/08/25

Release comrade N immediately!

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Protest against the crackdown of homeless movement by Osaka Prefectural Police
Release comrade N immediately!

Osaka Prefectural Police has just made another attempt for oppression.
24 August 2007, around 1 p.m., the police raided several apartments of the members of Kamagasaki patrol, which is homeless movement organization in Osaka, Japan, and arrested comrade N. His part-time working place was also raided.

The reason of arrest was “Violation of Road Transportation Vehicle Act”, which is quite unfamiliar law, and they insists that comrade N drove diesel-engine car last year inside Osaka city (the use of diesel car is prohibited in the city). But, the last time comrade N drove the car was more than six months ago. Surprisingly, he is the first person in Japan who arrested by this law!

Why Osaka Prefectural Police had to arrest him in such a manner? This is because comrade N has been fighting at the front line of the resistance of homeless people in Osaka, such as forced eviction of Nagai park in last February, and following forced deletion of citizenship registration of day / homeless laborer by the city.

The police arrested him the very day before the opening ceremony of the 11th World Championships in Athletics Osaka 2007. To arrest a person by such a petty suspicion is nothing but a “preventive detention”, and their aim is to strangle the voices of the people against the WCA. We will not forgive this oppression by the Osaka Prefectural Police.

In 5 February 2007, Osaka city violently evicted homeless people who had lived in the Nagai park, including comrade N. They ignored more than 5000 petition asking for stopping eviction by the citizen, and fabricated false “public opinion” saying that “Local people demands eviction”, and finally carried out the eviction using the tremendous amount of money, without answering at all the demands and questions of homeless comrades.

Why they forced such a brutal act? One clear reason is for the WCA, which invites the emperor.

In Japan, forced eviction of homeless people and the Tenno (emperor) system / National events have close relationship. Homeless people has been kicked out “like a trash”, whenever the emperor and the imperial family attend a ceremony, or national events like Olympic Games for enhancement of “National Dignity”. They regard homeless people as a thing that “spoil the view”.

Until now, countless waves of eviction have raged: Utsubo and Osaka castle park eviction (January 2006, for the World Rose Convention in May), Shirakawa park eviction (January 2005, Nagoya, for Aichi World Exposition), and so on. In Nagai park, homeless people evicted for the National Athletic Meet of 1997 and 2002 FIFA World Cup.

Problems are not only eviction. Osaka city forcedly deleted two thousand and eighty eight day / homeless laborer’s citizenship registration in this spring, and trying to cut down the “Special Employment for Elderly Worker” (three hundred million yen budget for a year / three million dollar), which provides jobs for unemployed elderly day laborer and homeless people. The city explains about the cut down of the budget as “lack of money”, while pouring four billion yen (forty million dollar) into the World Championships in Athletics!

Osaka city is trying to deprive the means for survival of the homeless people, this time using the WAC and coming of the emperor as a chance for “Beautification of Environment” and “Maintenance of the Park”. And Osaka Prefectural Police, in accordance with the city, arrested comrade N to stifle the protest against the opening ceremony of WAC, using such brutal measure!

Eviction of Utsubo-Osaka castle (January 2006), simultaneous crackdown of five homeless movement activist (27 September 2006. all released until 9 August 2007 in probation), forced deletion of citizenship registration, attempt for cutting down of Special Employment Measure, Nagai park eviction (February 2007)…..the judiciary / administration authorities united together, for destruction of the poor people’s right to live.

The 11th World Championships in Athletics Osaka 2007 is held in this war-like situation against the poor people. We condemn both WCA and the crackdown by the police.
We sincerely would like to ask you to raise your voice for protest, with us.

Kamagasaki Patrol

Send your message for protest against Osaka Prefectural Police!

Osaka Prefectural Police Headquarter
Tel: 81-6-6943-1234
3-1-11, Otemae, Chuou-ku, Osaka-si, 540-8540, JAPAN
posted by kamapat at 14:35 | English
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