12 years of 15M

This 14 May will mark the 12th anniversary of the 15 May that gave rise to the Indignados movement. At 12 o’clock in the morning, a demonstration will begin in the Gran Vía metro station (Madrid), which will pass through Callao and end at Sol, where various activities will take place.

As part of the celebration also, an exhibition of photographs of that “social awakening” is taking place in the Ferroviaria (Pza. Luca de Tena, 7 – Madrid).

One more year we take to the streets to celebrate that 12 years ago people’s indignation was shown by filling the squares of many cities and towns and the demand for true democracy and social justice resounded all over the world. In that year 2011, in 15M, movements and people came together around common values and political practices. The encampment of several weeks at the Puerta del Sol, the assembly and inclusive forms and their replication in hundreds of cities, together with the impulse of social networks and the creation and continuity of assemblies in many neighbourhoods and localities greatly influenced the social and political culture. This new form of mass gatherings of people of all ages, with the participation of the younger generations standing out, strengthened previous struggles and gave impetus to new ones. Since then, struggles have not ceased, albeit in a more dispersed form, in a context of systemic crisis and loss of rights. In more recent times we have witnessed large mobilisations (feminism, health care, etc.) and some significant advances and demands that have been translated into laws, although in a very insufficient manner, such as, for example, those contained in the housing law, labour reform, etc.

Let’s continue with mobilisation and the search for convergence and mutual support between neighbours, collectives and social movements, the only way to achieve sufficient force to reach the desired objectives. This is what has served, for example, to collect more than 700,000 signatures and bring to Congress the ILP for the regularisation of undocumented migrants or mobilise hundreds of thousands of people in defence of public and universal health care.

We would like to have a few words of recognition to the Self-managed Social Centres for the work they do in building neighbourhoods and creating meeting spaces for neighbours and collectives. We vindicate the squatting movement that risks suffering the harshness of repression, as in the case of the Fraguas repopulators who are requested to pay a huge fine or prison sentences for the “crime” of repopulating an abandoned village. From here our solidarity and support to the crowdfunding to pay the fine to avoid them going to jail, for which only a few days are left.

On the international scene, the high number of wars, armed conflicts, and the plundering of territories and peoples is very serious. In Ukraine, where the struggle between empires has broken out, the war is of particular concern, as both blocs have nuclear arsenals that they could use, since, far from slowing down, the escalation of arms continues and neither side is showing any interest in peace talks. They seek the military defeat of their adversary without caring about the large number of victims, the destruction of infrastructures and ecosystems, or the climate crisis they are aggravating. They continue their policy of destruction without regard for the enormous waste of economic resources that could be used for life rather than death. At the same time, war contributes to rising inflation and food shortages worldwide. For all these reasons, we demand a ceasefire NOW, the start of peace talks to end the conflict, just international relations based on respect and cooperation between peoples and countries that will end imperialist rivalries and help create free, equitable and democratic societies as the best way to achieve peace. In the meantime, we request protection and asylum for objectors, deserters, refuseniks and all those fleeing from war.


Redacción Madrid