On Sunday 28th July about a hundred people gathered outside the walls of the detention centre for migrants at Ponte Galeria in solidarity with those inside. This time they had also intented to greet the prisoners in the male unit, reopened at the beginning of June. Three armoured vehicles and an antiriot squad were already lined up, blocking the road; the police seemed very nervous at the approach of those in solidarity, and stopped them from reaching the male unit. So they gathered near the entrance and tried to break the silence inside the centre with chants to the prisoners.
The male unit had just been restructured to repair the damage following a revolt in 2015, which led to its closure and a new internal organization had been introduced. Prisoners are now split up into six large cells, which are non-communicating, and there are no common areas. Meals are taken inside the cells and mobile phones are seized on arrival. Communication with outside is only allowed through public phones with prepaid cards.
Clearly the prefectures in the towns with detention centres are taking great care to hamper communication between those locked up – so as to fend off any form of collective organization – and between those inside and outside: all forms of contact and solidarity from outside are hampered, isolation is intensified. If we sometimes read articles by some journalist or association that has been allowed in, focused on individual stories hinging on pietism and victimization, obviously the resistance and daily struggle – individual and collective – that the women and men in all detention centres in the West carry out against violence, humiliation and abuse are to remain hidden, and their voices silenced.
From outside you can see the newly built walls and nets on the roofs, but these didn’t prevent another revolt and escape just a few days after their inauguration, where twelve men regained their freedom.
Many words in different languages through microphones and the rhythm of the murgha tried to reach the prisoners in both units; unfortunately only feeble and sporadic replies could be heard. Probably, as in the past, people were locked up in areas far from the walls before the start of the gathering.
Besides solidarity chants, news was spread about detention centres all over Italy, the revolts in Turin, the hunger strike in Lione and Pian del Lago, Sahid’s death in the centre in Turin.
Detention centres for migrants are the last link in the border system, which operates all over the world to manage and to control people’s ability to move freely in search of new opportunities to escape the conflicts of capitalist colonialism.
Solidarity with those who resist and struggle in detention centres!
Against all cages
Translated by act for freedom now!