From: Els Date: 13 Sep 2007, 02:19 PM On September 12th, 2007 – Leonard Peltier’s birthday – the German human rights organization Society for Threatened Peoples (Gesellschaft für bedrohte Völker) organized a vigil in Erfurt.
Photos of the event can be seen in the photo gallery on our MySpace webpage.
Here is the report from Yvonne Bangert.
After our arrival in Erfurt, which is the capital of the Federal State of Thuringia we were escorted to the place we were permitted to stay by some four or five policemen, who continued to watch us during the whole vigil (about 4.00 pm until 6.30 pm).
We had with us a banner and some posters and of course a birthday cake covered with dark chocolate and decorated with black candles,
black as being a symbol for the sadness of a 31st birthday – or half a life – in prison.
Unfortunately we were not able to meet Consul General Scheland in person, because he came to the monastery, where the event was to take place, using another entrance. We did not see him. But we were assured by some of the official people that his assistant had recieved our info sheet and would give it to him.
But we were successful to hand out our info to the Prime Minister of Thuringia, Mr. Althaus.
Unfortunately there were no press people, just a film maker from a small local tv-station. They were all inside of the monastery compound Saint Augustin of the protestant church.
One of the nuns, I think it was the head of the house, came out to meet us. She said, that she was so touched by Leonard Peltier’s fate that they wanted to include parts of our info sheet in their service and they would pray for him.
In the evening we were escorted out of town again by police. We missed the road and circled around the old town twice, which gave us the chance to notice that there was police following us. They finally stopped us and offered to show us the road leading out of town, which was nice in a way. But obviously they were ordered to see to it that we really leave town.
I close with a link to the file of our press release, unfortunately only in German: