Squatters kicked off Oslo site after 14-year standoff

Squatters kicked off Oslo site after 14-year standoff
Police prepare to enter Brakkebygrenda on Wednesday morning Photo: Ole Berg-Rusten/Scanpix
Squatters living illegally on a large site in central Oslo have been evicted by police, bringing to an end a dispute that has run for more than a decade.

The squatters, who lived in makeshift huts and caravans, said the Brakkebygrenda settlement was an environmentally-friendly alternative to mainstream society. 

They were ordered to clear the area after the owner secured a court order. Police said that the eviction was mostly peaceful, although some squatters put up “passive resistance”. 

“We’ve had a good dialogue throughout with the people who were here. Most people had left the area when we arrived,” Torgeir Brenden of Oslo police told news agency NTB.

When police arrived at 8:30am on Wednesday, a handful of the remaining 20 residents climbed into trees on the site and had to be brought down by the fire brigade.

Wednesday was the second time occupiers had been evicted from the site, after a similar operation in 2008. 

The owner of the site had been ordered by Oslo city council to clear away the illegal settlement, after which he secured a court order for the eviction. According to Dagbladet newspaper, the owner of the site lives abroad and has no firm plans to develop it.

The squatters were given notice of the eviction and told to get out voluntarily by February 1st. 

Police said that nobody was arrested in the operation, but that some people were force ably removed from the site.

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