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Aug 2, 19

San Francisco, CA: Police Violently Raid Abolish ICE Encampment After Block Party

Report from Abolish ICE SF on community block party and encampment which was violently raided by riot police.

SAN FRANCISCO – On July 30th, from 12pm-5am, community members held a “Block Party to Abolish ICE” (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) at the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement Building at 630 Sansome Street, in San Francisco. The organizers and participants were autonomous people coming together to disrupt and denounce ICE and the harms ICE brings to their communities, while honoring indigenous struggles and rights to their ancestral lands.

Around 12pm, people began to gather on the sidewalk outside of the ICE building, which houses the “Enforcement and Removal Operations” field offices that orchestrate the vast majority of raids and targeted attacks on immigrant communities across Northern California. A stakebed truck which served as the DJ booth and stage was set up, and the day’s program began with speakers from community organizations Causa Justa/Just Cause and Free SF Coalition, a legal defense team that supports undocumented people.

The Block Party to Abolish ICE was met with an immediate response from SFPD, who called a tow truck to haul away the truck, in an evident effort to stop the party. However, after a brief stop, the tow truck left without any disruption to the day’s programming, and the Block Party continued on as planned.

The festivities continued through the afternoon and into the night, as community members barbequed lunch, brought food and drinks to share, and enjoyed the DJs. Speakers included those representing Border Resistance; Arab Resource & Organizing Center (AROC), Never Again is Now; Anakbayan; 30 Days of Action to Close the Camps; Boycott Manny’s; Coalition Against War and Displacement; and many others. A full list of speakers and performers is available on the event’s facebook page.

At night, a group of the people at the Block Party established an occupation and stayed overnight, expanding the Block Party into an encampment protesting ICE. This community occupied the space throughout the entire day of the 31st, until the camp was violently raided by police in riot gear around 1 am, on August 1st. An estimated 50-60 police in full riot gear, armed with rifles that appeared to hold either bean bag rounds or rubbet bullet rounds, forcefully cornered, kettled, and arrested 15 protesters. They threatened to shoot at the protesters if they didn’t cooperate. They brutalized one person, who is still in police custody with allegations of resisting arrest. The other 14 people arrested by SFPD were released early on the morning of August 1st.

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