STEPS TOWARDS REAPPRAISAL

  • 2005 One week after Laye Condé’s death, over 2,000 people demonstrate in Bremen against racist police violence.
  • Since 2006 On the anniversary of Laye Condé’s death, activists organize public commemoration events in Bremen. In the first years, the „Caravan for the Rights of Refugees and Migrants“ mobilizes significantly.
  • From 2013 The Initiative in Memory of Laye Alama Condé demands a permanent public place of remembrance for Mr. Condé and the forced emetic distribution, as well as material compensation to all those affected by the emetic torture.
  • 2013 From April to September, the initiative accompanies the third emetic trial as a trial observer and continuously documents it in trial reports.
  • 2013 In June, hundreds of activists demonstrate against the threatened discontinuation of the third Bremen „Brechmittelprozess“ (emetic trial) due to „minor guilt“ of the doctor.
  • 2013 In September, the Initiative in Memory of Laye Condé files a criminal complaint with the Bremen public prosecutor’s office against ex-mayor Scherf on suspicion of making false unsworn statements. He had claimed as a witness in the third emetic trial that there had „never been any criticism or any problems“ with the forced distribution of emetics in Bremen. Scherf claimed to have learned of Achidi John’s death from emetics in Hamburg only after Laye Condé’s death. The initiative presents several pieces of evidence in its complaint.
  • Starting in 2014, the initiative wrote letters to political leaders and held countless background discussions with local councillors, members of parliament and officials from the Green Party, the Left Party, the SPD, the police chief, representatives of the medical chamber, members of the cultural deputation, representatives of public institutions such as the management of the Gerhard-Marcks-Haus, the artistic director of the Theater Bremen – and many others.
  • 2014 In January, on the occasion of the 9th anniversary of his death, Bremen’s police chief Lutz Müller publicly takes responsibility for Laye Condé’s death and asks his mother, Fatma Tarawalli, in writing for an apology. He presents the brochure „The Death of Laye-Alama Condé“. A short time later, Bremen’s mayor Jens Böhrnsen also publicly declares his regret over Mr. Condé’s death.
  • 2014 In March, the Green Party parliamentary group in Bremen’s Bürgerschaft (state parliament) formulates a motion to come to terms with the emetic distribution: „Death after distribution of emetics. Responsibility and consequences.“ The coalition partner SPD does not support the motion; it is therefore not introduced into the Bürgerschaft.
  • 2014 Contacts can be made with several victims of emetic torture via a defense attorney. They report on their painful experiences in interviews and agree to publish them.
  • 2014 In June, the Initiative in Memory of Laye Alama Condé organizes the public hearing „Who was involved in the killing of Laye Condé?“ on Bremen’s market square.
  • 2014 The initiative informs at public events about the „system of emetic torture“ that lasted for 13 years and their demands for a memorial place and compensation for all victims of emetic torture.
  • 2015 Together with the two artists Doris Weinberger and Jule Körperich, the Initiative in Memory of Laye Condé presents an artistic design for a place of remembrance.
  • 2016 At the annual memorial event on the anniversary of Laye Condé’s death, actors* from the ensemble of the Theater Bremen recite the accounts of those affected by emetics.
  • 2017 Bremen’s former mayor Scherf is self-critical for the first time about his role as the politician primarily responsible: he feels guilty that he made Laye Condé’s death possible and it weighs heavily on him that a person died in police custody in his area of responsibility. „We got caught up in a system of directives“ the longtime emetic hardliner said.
  • 2017 The Initiative in Memory of Laye Condé installs a Mobile Place of Remembrance, which has since been placed in various locations. The memory of Laye Condé and the forced emetic distribution becomes increasingly visible in public space.
  • 2017 In December, the parliamentary group of the Green Party submits a major question to the Bremen Senate: „Human rights violating emetic distribution: responsibility and consequences“.
  • 2018 In February, the Senate answers the question and describes the years-long practice of issuing emetics as a „legally unobjectionable procedure“ at the time and states that it has no assessment „according to which the forced use of emetics during the entire duration of the measure is to be regarded as unlawful state violence […].“ For the first time, however, the Senate also expresses its „regret“ and states that Laye Condé’s death was „avoidable“ and that the adherence to emetic torture in 2001 was a „tragic and regrettable wrong decision“. However, the Senate „strongly rejects“ the allegation that there was racist thinking and actions by law enforcement.
  • 2018 In March, the Initiative in Memory of Laye Alama Condé publishes a commentary on the Senate’s response, detailing the substantive errors and weaknesses, and hands it out to all members of the Bürgerschaft (state parliament).
  • 2019 At the annual commemoration of the anniversary of Laye Condé’s death, the short film „Killing with Announcement“ is presented on a large screen.
  • 2019 In July, the Green Party, the Left Party and SPD agree in their coalition agreement: „On the occasion of Laye-Alama Condé’s death on January 7, 2005, as a result of forcibly administered emetics in police custody, the coalition partners advocate the establishment of a place of remembrance to remind that no one should be allowed to suffer lasting harm or loss of life while in police custody.“
  • 2020 In July, the government coalition (Greens, Left, SPD) submits the joint motion in the Bürgerschaft: „Human rights abusing emetic: take responsibility and create a place of remembrance and admonition“. In December, the Bremen Bürgerschaft approves this motion by a majority.
  • 2021 The cultural deputation begins deliberations on the nationwide call for proposals for the memorial to artists*. The call for proposals is intended to specifically address Black artists and artists* of color, as the dimension of racism is to be centrally expressed in the artistic design of the memorial.
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