Dehai News

The city of Gießen has canceled the planned Eritrea Festival for security reasons

Posted by: Semere Asmelash

Date: Thursday, 29 June 2023

Eritrea festival bannedTHE CITY OF GIESSEN FEARS RIOTS29.06.2023

© FFH

In the summer of 2022, visitors to the Eritrea Festival protested peacefully in downtown Giessen against the dissolution of their event. 

The city of Gießen has banned the Eritrea Festival in the Hessenhallen. The city announced that the security concept of the organizers was not sufficient.

Last year, disturbers threatened visitors to the festival and forcibly gained access to the site. The police had information that on the second weekend in July violent disruptors wanted to come from other European countries too. 

City fears for the safety of visitors and the general public

After the violent protests last year, the city's public order office has therefore banned the next edition of the festival, which was planned for the second weekend in July (July 7th/8th). It is said that the aim is to avert such impending dangers, especially for visitors to the festival, but also for the general public.

Threats against police via social media channels

Concrete threats against the event and its visitors had "significantly increased" in the run-up to the event this year, according to the police. The opponents of the festival apparently "acted independently of the registered counter-demonstrations" and wanted to prevent the festival. Concrete threats against law enforcement officers and the police were also spread via social media channels, it said. Therefore, one must assume that this year an even larger number of violent people would move to prevent the festival.

Central Council of Eritreans can appeal against ban

However, despite repeated requests, the Central Council of Eritreans Germany, as organizer of the festival, did not adapt the security concept and, for example, did not submit any access regulations for the site. Rather, he announced "that he wanted to let everyone in and did not provide for any access restrictions," it said. The organizer can appeal against the decision of the public order office.

Disruptors injured 26 people, including seven police officers

In August last year, around 100 people attacked helpers and visitors to the event at the time, 26 of them were injured, and seven police officers also suffered minor injuries. The police finally broke up the event to ward off further dangers, and a total of 300 officers were on duty. Critics accuse the event of having a problematic proximity to the Eritrean government. 

Anne Smith

Reporter
Anne Schmidt


Gießen verbietet Eritrea-Festival | hessenschau.de












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