Buildings slated to be evacuated on the basis of Holland’s new anti-squatting law were not evacuated after the court in The Hague judged the evictions to be in violation of the European Convention on Human Rights.
Earlier in the day several hundred squatters had demonstrated peacefully against the new law, which carries punishments of up to one year in prison.
The Netherlands is among a handful of countries where — under certain circumstances — squatting is not forbidden by law. If a building has not been used for a period of twelve months, and the owner can not demonstrate that he plans to ‘soon’ start using the building again, squatting is tolerated.
The squatters movements gained much sympathy during the seventies and early eighties, but in recent years the increasingly anarchistic nature of these groups has had politicians calling for changes to the squatting laws.
At this time, 14 people are still in custody.
Police are trying to find out whether the second group has ties with the building’s owner — as suggested by the squatters currently occupying the building.