Pagani is not been shut down. Last night 40 people slept there with open cell doors, possibly open yard doors and one (or few) cops guarding outside. These people are beeing transfered right now to Mersinidi, Chios.
There are a lot of speculations about future developments regarding detention. Today (4/11) local newspapers are writing that Pagani will be functioning as a transit registration center. The renovation will be finished at the end of December and on the mean time one cell will “host” migrants overnight in cases there are no ferry. Maximum number of detained migrants will be 150 (rmk: when they first opened Pagani the official maximum number was 70-80!).
On Monday at the Global Forum on Migration and Development Vougias (Deputy Citizens’ Protection
Minister) declared an agreement with the Defense Minister for using an 8 hectares military area to build a new camp. Local newspapers are refering to it as “model” camp “for adults and minors”, with “police guarding just outside”. The new camp will be located at ‘Kata Tepe’ (Black Hill, this is turkish) that is about 10 km north from Mytilene.
About the deputy’s statements and report from the GFMD (in english)
The report about the new camp (in greek)
(*) by the way: a student’s union denounced last weekend occupation of Paparisva building because they haven’t been informed and haven’t discourse with university authorities first. Of course they declare their absolute solidarity to migrants.
Tuesday morning: The local newspapers reported that Pagani would be reopened after a period of two or three months as a open centre with no police guards. This is at least what local politicians and police authoities stated officially. The damages have been estimated, it is being cleaned thesedays and if or when the reparation is funded by the ministry works will go on.
Tuesday noon: Pagani has open doors.inside cleaning staff is trying to fullfill wonders for the prefecture. Empty rooms full of clothes, dirt, abandoned beds covered with black plastic bags some days ago the only method for some “privacy”, a cat playing freely inside the former prison. Former? The last cell is already clean. Matrasses a prepared. It looks as if Pagani was expecting “guests” again.
Outside three FRONTEX employees inspect carefully the closed???? prison.
Tuesday afternoon: The weather forecast foresees rain and wind. The sky is grey. Pagani has turned on some lights in one of the cells. A police car is controlling the outer area. Clothes hanging on the fence. Tomorrow there should be a ship leaving to Chios in the morning. Tuesday end of the day: Is Pagani now closed or isn`t it?! We will read it in the newspapers of tomorrow.
Today, we were at Pagani again, although with a smaller group. The situation was a bit calmer, which greatly helped to deepen conversations with the detained migrants. Here are a couple of images which once again prove how bad it is to be in Pagani, and a short video clip we produced with different material taken inside. It shows that even youngest kids are imprisoned. You also see detained women demanding freedom, and some young men show that their room is so overcrowded that they not only sleep on the ground, but also beneath the other beds.
On 18th of August 2009, 160 unaccompanied minors detained in Pagani detention centre went on hunger strike to demand their immediate freedom. All of them are detained in just one room, where they share one toilet, many need to sleep on the floor due to lack of beds. Some of the minors are only eight or nine years old. 50 of them have been detained for over 2 months, the others have been in Pagani for several weeks already. The detention of minors is illegal under greek law.
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!