Archive for the 'Demonstration' Category

Call for worldwide action day: solidarity to the hunger strikers in Greece

Please post your planned solidarity actions in the comment field!

New York Indymedia calling for a worldwide solidarity action day on 10th of March – day 45 of hunger strike:

The 10th of March will be the 45th day of their hunger strike, but the Greek State has not yet responded to their rightful claims!
We call people in Greece and throughout the world to carry out civil disobedience actions on the 10th of March in solidarity with the 300 hunger strikers.

2.500 people in the streets of Thessaloniki

In Thessaloniki 2.500 people attended the demonstration in solidarity with the 300 hunger strikers last thursday (03/03/2011). Check out pictures and video!

[300] Day 31

Today 24th of February is the 31st day of hunger strike for the 300 migrant hunger strikers in Athens and Thessaloniki. Entering in the 5th week of hunger strike, consuming only water, sugar and salt, the health condition of the 300 hunger strikers is becoming very critical. There are approximately 6 persons in hospitals in Athens and about 4 in Thessaloniki. Next week is probably the most important for the migrants’ struggle.

On the political level we have developments which show the political pressure on the greek government, which reacts both in hardening of its public declarations and an attempt to threaten the hunger strikers and the solidarity movement by legal prosecutions -but it also keeps open the possibility of negotiation which can end to an agreement. The mass media after a period of “silence” are returning in an aggressive discourse against the solidarity movement and the migrants in general.

Today minister of interior Ragousis announced publicly a proposal of granting a 6month “tolerance status” to the hunger strikers, and declared also measures for the illigalized migrants of long residence. At the same time he said that any kind of collective regularization is out of question and he accused the “supporters” for the bringing in danger the hunger strikers. Of course the minister proposal cannot be accepted by the hunger strikers who announced 3 days ago their demands:

For us, legalisation is neither a generic nor an abstract slogan. We don’t want proposals to be heard without us. For us legalisation means many and very specific things. Between those, first and foremost:
The issuing – since we are entitled to it – of a proper residence and labor permit to us, the 300 hunger strikers, who demand what should be a given for everyone by putting our lives on the line

As well as:

  • that residence permits are no longer connected to work credits
  • that all who lost their permits because of the above reason are legalised again
  • the vindication of everyone whose application was rejected in 2005, after their application submission had been accepted and after they were forced to pay thousands of euros each
  • the establishment of a permanent and open procedure for complete legalisation, which will process applications constantly
  • the abandonment of any idea of criminalising any of our comrades in solidarity with us, who have been called as suspects of committing criminal acts by the authorities

And many more…

Anyone who wants to seriously engage with our strike and avoid a humanitarian crisis in Greece, should officially and directly contact us and whatever discussion must be focused on meeting the above demands.
Every human is worth a dignified life and labor
The hunger strike shall win!

Athens – Thessaloniki
21-2-2011 / 28th day on hunger strike
The 300 hunger strikers

Continue reading ‘[300] Day 31’

The hunger strike at day 21

This is a translation of this blog post in German. Picture Credit: Stroux

Today is day 21 of the hunger strike. This is a report about the last days. Most of the hunger striking migrants arrived from Crete on a ferry 22 days ago, in order to start the hunger strike. There were huge banners on the ferry, announcing the aims and demands of the hunger strike.

Solidarity groups welcomed the migrants at the port of Piraeus, and then, they altogether moved to an empty building of the university in the centre of Athens. A university building was picked because police is not allowed to enter the university (university asylum) since the end of the military junta, when soldiers entered the polytechnic university by force.

Just as the hunger strike had started, political parties and main stream media started a agitating against the strike. The government sued the owner of the ferry, its agents and the captain for the smuggling of illegalised people (“trafficking”). This is a big joke, since ANEK-lines has been doing deportations for the greek government for years. A few days later already, 1.800 persons had denounced themselves publically for having supported refugees as an act of solidarity.

The agitation led to the hunger strikers having to leave the university building after a few days, as the police threatened to enter by force. We had a gun to our head, one of the activists later stated on a press conference. The very night, a substitute place for more than 100 hunger strikers had to be found. After several hours of negotiations with the paolce and with the owner of a nearby, empty villa, a solidarity demonstration brought the hunger strikers to the new place. Since only the first floor and the cellar can be used, the majority of the hunger strikers have to camp in the yard. Heavy rain turned the situation precarious, only on the 5th of February, a change of weather alleviated the situation.

The hunger strikes are being supported, protected and accompanied day and night by solidarity groups. Since the hunger strikers are very adamant about retaining their autonomy, decisions are made in different assemblies, which nevertheless have exchange. The atmosphere is characterised by determination and respect. Many people support the strikers by visiting or practical aid.

On the 8th of February, a lot of migrant organisations from Athens and Greece declared their solidarity with the hunger strikers and their demands in a press conference. The hunger strikers announced that very day that they would now also stop to drink tea.

On the 9th of February, a long live concert with many greek musicians took place on the adjacent square. There were songs, but also speeches by the migrants and statements of solidarity.

On the 11th and 12th of February, two big demonstrations took place in Athens, where 1.500 people participated.

Declaration of solidarity with the hunger strikers in Greece – Legalisation and equal rights now – Call for a week of action

The 25th of January is the day on which 300 migrants in Greece started a hunger strike. Their demand is a collective legalisation of all the people excluded from Greek society based on their status – be it asylum seekers, not recognised refugees, illegalised people, exploited migrant labourers. It is not the first hunger strike in Greece where human beings are forced to use such a drastic measure to fight for their rights.

Hunger strikers in Thessaloniki

Hunger strikers in Thessaloniki


Continue reading ‘Declaration of solidarity with the hunger strikers in Greece – Legalisation and equal rights now – Call for a week of action’

Protest in Istanbul [1 Update]

The Migrant Solidarity Network in Istanbul is calling for a demonstration on Saturday, the 8th of January in Istanbul, concerning the increasing militarisation of the borders around Turkey. Issues are the to be established Turkish border agency as well as the announcement by the Greek government to build a fence at the land border between Turkey and Greece.

Saturday, 8th of January 2010, 14:00, Galatasaray Square.

Update

Here is a video from the action. Our friends write:

The meeting on Saturday was attended by about 30-35 people. Interestingly enough the attendance of the press was quite impressive. The protest appeared on many mainstream media outlets, paper and virtual.

Here is the call in Turkish:
Continue reading ‘Protest in Istanbul [1 Update]’

Iranian refugees arrested during protests against UNHCR in Turkey

On Sunday, 19 December 2010, 12 iranian refugees were arrested by turkish police forces after protests in front of UNHCR’s offices in Ankara. The demonstration was held in order to denounce the refugee agency’s violation of the rights of asylum-seekers in Turkey and was part of an international campaign coordinated by the International Coalition for the Rights of Iranian Refugees (ICRIR).

The refugees’ list of accusations against UNHCR is long. In a call for joint international protests against refugees’ situation in Turkey, ICRIR representatives proclaim deep concern about unprofessional and criminalizing treatment by UNHCR staff, long waiting periods for recognition as refugees, untenable living conditions for asylum-seekers, insufficient protection against violence and abuse by both turkish police and iranian secret agents as well as denial of official refugee status without cause.

Continue reading ‘Iranian refugees arrested during protests against UNHCR in Turkey’

Fylakio

from afghanistan 6 days here what the broblem?

asks young Hamis Abdalah Ghasmi from Afghanistan on a piece of cardboard that was slipped to our delegation in Fylakio. And indeed, it is the question all migrants in detention in the Evros region have in mind: Why am I being kept here?

Yesterday, i.e. Saturday, the 18th of December 2010, saw a mobilisation from the Greek antiracist movement to the Evros region, where most of the border crossings happened the last months and where many hundreds of migrants are being detained under comparably horrible circumstances as in the infamous prison of Pagani.

Continue reading ‘Fylakio’

Samos Report

This is a first interim report of this year’s Swarming No Border activities in Greece. The first stop was Samos, an island in the Aegean sea, close to the Turkish mainland. The proximity to Turkey is why many migrants arrive here and consequently Frontex is stationed here too. Together with activists from Samos, we organised an anti-racist weekend during our stay there.

Continue reading ‘Samos Report’

Meanwhile in Australia

Yes, we have arrived on Lesvos island, and we are preparing out first reports, discussing our timetable and meeting with local activists. Expect updates soon.

But right now, we would like to turn your attention to Australia, where more than 80 Afghan refugees whose asylum claim had been rejected and who were detained in a privately run detention centre in Darwin have broken free and staged a protest in order to halt their deportation. They have now been arrested and are being taken to another detention centre.

From an article in the The Australian:

Immigration Department spokesman Sandi Logan earlier said the men had broken through two electrified fences – an interior fence and a perimeter fence, both carrying 11,000 volts – at about 6.30 this morning.

Followups: here, here and there generally seem to be tensions at Darwin detention centre: Indonesian fisherman who are charged with people smuggling and face a 20-year prison sentence have been rioting.

We send our solidarity to all those imprisoned in Australian detention centre! Freedom! Azadi!

About w2eu

This is the blog of the antiracist network Welcome to Europe. It was formerly known as lesvos09.antira.info.

 

The name Welcome to Europe expresses the discontent and anger we feel when looking at the fatal realities of the European external border: the long documented deaths and suffering have continued for years, and no end is in sight. We stand for a grassroots movement that embraces migration and wants to create a Europe of hospitality.

 

We maintain our focus on the European external border in Greece, but will not limit ourselves to that geographical area. The right of freely roaming the globe has to be fought for everywhere. Join us!

 

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Voices from the Inside of Pagani (2009)

Watch the video