Nørrebro

Nørrebro

Nørrebro is the common name for an area in Copenhagen, Denmark located beyond the historic city center (the Indre By), and beyond the location of the old Northern Gate (Nørreport), which was near the current Nørreport station until dismantled in 1856.

The Nørrebro area consists of two of the 15 administrative, statistical, and tax city districts (bydele) comprising the municipality of Copenhagen:

Culture

Nørrebro is also known for its poly-cultural society, mostly from Middle-Eastern background. The dynamic, multi-ethnic main street Nørrebrogade runs through the area, with a multitude of shops and restaurants. One of the main points of interest in the area is historic Assistens Cemetery (Assistens Kirkegård), final resting place of Søren Kirkegaard, Niels Bohr and H.C. Andersen.

Nørrebro is a multi-ethnic society, and is inhabitated by people from all parts of the world. The largest minority groups of people living in Nørrebro are Arabs, Iranian, Pakistani, and many more.

Riots

Nørrebrogade is known as the site of many riots over the years. During the 1980s, it often provided the settings for violent clashes between riot police and militant squatters. The battles were of a very vicious nature, often involving molotov-cocktails and pipe bombs being used by the squatters, as well as batons, tear gas and firearms used by the police.

On May 18, 1993 it was the scene of the Nørrebro riot following the Danish "yes"-vote to the European Union. The police were unprepared for the rioters who threw paving stones from a nearby city construction site. 118 shots were subsequently fired into the mass of protesters and several demonstrators were wounded, some severely. Though none were killed instantly, the fight left 13 demonstrators and 92 policemen injured.

The riot was the worst since World War II, but no accurate account of why the policemen were unprepared or what exactly happened has ever been given. Following the riot the Danish police upgraded their hand-carried weapons to modern standards and began a process towards becoming a professional and modern police force.

In late December 2006, a riot took place, regarding the fate of the squatted social centre Ungdomshuset ("The Youth House"). A demonstration in support of the house was blocked by the police and a fullface streetfight broke out. The demonstrators hurled stones and fireworks at the police, who in response used their armoured cars to disband the demonstrators and fired tear gas in to the crowd. The fight grew into a full scale riot, with fires burning over night in the streets. 4 police and 2 demonstrators were injured.

On March 1, 2007, the biggest riots in recent Danish history broke out when the police moved in and evicted squatters in Ungdomshuset, which was followed by the demolition of the building. It is estimated that the eviction of Ungdomshuset and the damage done during the following riots has cost the city and the state around 100 million danish kroner (around 17 million USD). On September 1, 2007, additional rioting resulted from a protest marking the six-month anniversary of the demolition of Ungdomshuset.

Notes

See also

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