Thank you for the large mobilization!

Around 200 activists behind a banner saying “Protext whistleblowers, not tax dodgers”
© Attac / CCFD-Terre Solidaire / ActionAid – CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

On Monday 12 December, at the opening of the LuxLeaks appeal trial, we were about 300 citizens from more than 20 different countries to mobilize in Luxembourg in support of Antoine Deltour, Raphaël Halet, and Édouard Perrin… A huge thank you to all of you!

This mobilization was a real success; it symbolized the citizens' solidarity with the whistleblowers and journalist who decided general interest and the duty to inform should take precendence over their personal interest.

A support evening

The mobilization started on Sunday evening, with a large support meeting organized by the Luxembourger Solidarity Committee at the youth hostel in Luxembourg.

During the meeting –which progressively filled up to finally reach over a hundred people–, several speakers delivered high quality talks. We would like to thank (in order of speaking):

Alain Deneault, speaking on Sunday evening
© Lucie Watrinet – All rights reserved

We would also like to thank the MEPs who sent video message of support:

Tax tour in Luxembourg

On Monday morning, activists already present met at 9am at the Rotondes for a short briefing on the day to come. Then, a French-speaking bus and an English-speaking bus left for a “Tax tour” jointly organized by Tax Justice Europe and Plateforme Paradis Fiscaux et Judiciaires. The tour included the seeing of the tax evasion landmarks in the city of Luxembourg, following the trail of subsidiaries or mailboxes for Engie, McDonald's, Société Générale, Amazon, etc.

Activists during the tax tour
© Comité de soutien à Antoine Deltour – CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

Speeches in front of the Court

The militants then gathered in the precincts of the Court of Luxembourg, joined by members of the Support Committee for Antoine Deltour (who came by bus from Lorraine) and of the HelpRaph group (who came by car-sharing). All of them listened –from 1:30 pm to 2:30 pm– to the speeches of about twenty representatives of civil society, trade unions, MEPs and members of the support committees. Their (well-timed!) speeches largely focused on the citizen’s demand for tax justice, and the need for better protection for whistleblowers, guarantors of the right to information.

Some speakers: Stelios Kouloglou, Lison Rehbinder, Virginie Rozière, Alain Deneault, David Wagner, Javor Benedek, Françoise Dumont, Dominique Plihon, Sophie Binet, Jonathan Sugarman, Cannelle Lavite, Ricardo Gutiérrez, François Thiery, Lucie Watrinet
© Comité de soutien à Antoine Deltour – CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

We would like to thank the speakers who sometimes came from afar to express their support (in order of appearance):

Speeches where coordinated by Justing Turpel on behalf of the support committees and Lison Rehbinder on behalf of Plateforme Paradis Fiscaux et Judiciaires

People listening to public speeches in the precinct of the Court
© Comité de soutien à Antoine Deltour – CC BY-SA 4.0

All the participants in the mobilization then regrouped behind a large banner saying “Protect whistleblowers, not tax dodgers” for an aerial group photo.

The moving arrival of the defendants

Juste before the start of the hearing at 3 pm, the crowd formed a thirty-meter guard of honour in front of the Court's entrance, in order to welcome the defendants. They arrived one by one: Raphael Halet, then Édouard Perrin, and finally Antoine Deltour. All three were loudly applauded and praised by the militant’s song: “Thank you Antoine, Thank you Raphael, Thank you Édouard, Thank you!”. This was a very warm and moving welcome and we hope it was able to encourage the defendants before the beginning of the trial.

The guard of honour, ready to welcome the defendants
© Attac / CCFD-Terre Solidaire / ActionAid – CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

Let’s remain alert!

This terrific mobilization has allowed us to send a very clear message: citizens are resolutely concerned with tax justice and the right for information, and we are all ready to support the defendants as long as they will need it!

Finally, thanks and congratulations to the organizers: