Extinction Rebellion (XR) is an international movement using non-violent direct action to persuade governments to act on the Climate and Ecological Emergency.
On 31st October 2018, Extinction Rebellion UK announced a Declaration of Rebellion against the UK government. 94 academics supporting this declaration signed a first open letter to the Guardian saying:
When a government willfully abrogates its responsibility to protect its citizens from harm and to secure the future for generations to come, it has failed in its most essential duty of stewardship. The ‘social contract’ has been broken, and it is therefore not only our right, but our moral duty to bypass the government’s inaction and flagrant dereliction of duty, and to rebel to defend life itself.
A second open letter soon followed on December 9th of the same year. These letters did not only resonate in the UK. Within a few weeks XR had spread to lots of other countries, and in January 2019 XR Belgium was formed. Extinction Rebellion is now active in 56 countries, with 645 local groups (and counting) working relentlessly to build this global movement.
On October 12th 2019, XR Belgium came together in our first national mass-mobilisation action: the Royal Rebellion. We occupied the Place Royal in Brussels and organised people's assemblies there on different topics. Police decided to end our action and unfortunately used illegal violence to achieve this.
On December 20th, we gathered on the Grand Place to renew our declaration of Rebellion in a collective performance called Extension of the rebellion. The local authorities chose to cover our voices with loud Christmas music. But we will not be silenced.
On Saturday 18 January 2020, Extinction Rebellion Belgium carried out the action "Salon of Lies" to correct the deceitful image the car industry portrays of itself. This action of mass civil disobedience denounced the many lies which car manufacturers keep selling to the public to increase their sales at the cost of the environment, people's health, and social justice.
On April 14 at 10:30, Extinction Rebellion Belgium has published a fictional video speech by Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès on its online channels. In this fake speech, our PM acknowledges that the current pandemic and the climate and ecological crisis has combined origins. She introduces a fundamental democratic renewal: political decision-making power to design such a recovery plan will be handed over to a Citizens' Assembly.
In the following days, rebels have published their own videos in which they share their questioning of Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès.
14 days of Cascading Rebellion from 2020 June 15– 27th... Business as usual has led to these crises, let's move on to something else! With Our Future – Our Choices, Extinction Rebellion Belgium is calling on everyone to stop the rushed race to "return to normal", and to take stock of our society. The campaign was developed over 3 stages of increasing intensity which culminated on 27 June with a big action of civil disobedience in Brussels.
On a national level, we are now strenghtening the foundations of the movement by helping local groups through trainings, the practice of regenerative culture and support of local actions. We are also actively supporting the campaign for a citizen parliament.