*IN SOLIDARITY* Polish queer activists beaten by the police at Poznań Economic University

On the 5th of December catholic priest Professor Paweł Bortkiewicz 
delivered a talk at the Economic University of Poznań entitled 
“Does gender devastate life and family?” (after an immense pressure 
from academic community changed from the initial affirmative 
“Gender – devastation of life and family”). The lecture, blaming gender 
(it’s never clear what exactly is blamed, but most certainly – gender 
studies at Polish universities, gender equality as a one of educational 
principles at schools, feminist and lgbtq movements, etc.) for destroying 
the identity of the family, for abortion, employment of women (!) and 
detaining children in nurseries (!), is part of the growing campaign by the
Polish catholic church against feminist and lgbtq movements. 

Because the university authorities sustained their decision to welcome 
the lecture at the university, despite a petition against the lecture 
signed by Polish scholars and over 600 other people, a group of students 
and activists decided to organize a happening during the event. One of 
the activists, wearing golden dress, long-hair wig and make-up, danced his 
way among the audience to the lecturer priest, whereupon he danced on the 
table next to him shouting “I invite you to the devastation of the family” 
while the rest of activists ridiculed the priest and the speaker of the 
organizers who began to introduce the topic of the lecture (the event was 
organized by male-only student association Lechia Corporation).

Only a few minutes into the happening several people from the audience 
began breaking it down, hunting down the activists and brutally pulling 
them out of the room (the people turned out to be undercover police forces). 
The organizers decided to move the lecture to another room and asked 
the audience to leave the room. While people were leaving the undercover 
police continued to use violence against the protesters – they pulled, 
beat them and used electroshock weapons (“paralysers”) against them. Soon 
riot police invaded the university room with batons, helmets and shields. 
Police again used electroshock weapons and batons. Those still remaining 
in the room were brutally pushed out of the room so to prevent witnesses 
of the police intervention.

It turned out that some days before the lecture the rector of the 
Economic University had asked the police to help secure the event and later 
agreed to the intervention upon the request from the police. All that 
despite the autonomy of the university territory. 

Medical forensic examination of the protesters revealed numerous bruises 
from batons and paralyzers. One person had his arm broken.

Three people were detained without sufficient explanation. Other activists
gathered in front of the police quarter to show solidarity. 

All three protesters are charged with assaulting police officers and 
with trespassing on university territory. 

*We ask you to protest the police intervention on academic territory 
and the decision to let the police in. Please send the Rector of 
the Economic University a letter condemning his behavior.*

His e-mail address:

Short films of the police intervention can be watched here and here.