Residents of a counterculture oasis in the Danish capital challenged government moves to regain control of their community Monday, petitioning a court to guarantee their right to use the former navy base they took over three decades ago.
The case is expected to determine the future of Christiania, a partially self-governing neighborhood of more than 900 residents that was created in 1971 when hippies began squatting at a derelict 18th-century navy fort on state-owned land.
Christiania became an enclave with psychedelic-colored buildings, open trade of hashish and limited interference from the government. But when authorities started cracking down on the drug trade in 2004 and later announced plans to tear down buildings to build new apartment blocks, the squatters fought back.
They sued the government in 2006, claiming they have the right to use the land, even if they don’t own it. The center-right government rejects that claim.
(via Dose Nation)