Tag Archive for 'demonstration'

Athens: Hundreds take to the streets and demand open borders

copyright: Salinis Stroux

copyright: Salinis Stroux

During an antiracist rally that started from Victoria Square in the centre of Athens and passed the Greek Parliament to reach the Offices of the Representation of the European Commission in Greece, hundreds of antiracists along with many Afghan refugees demanded the opening of the border, protection and a safe passage instead of deportations. The Afghans came from different transit camps as Elliniko and Schisto.

Freedom of movement is everybody’s right!


copyright: Salinia Stroux

Open the border! Open houses! – Struggles and resistance growing in Greece

Hot Spot Moria

Hot Spot Moria

In the past two weeks protests of refugees and supporters are growing over all of the country as the border to the Balkans was closed and thousands are stuck in Greece. From the Hot Spot in Moria, to the transit camp Schisto near Athens, Victoria Square, Thermoupolis, Kozani to Idomeni – people are standing up and demanding the opening of borders.

Schisto protest

Schisto protest

Solidarity is further sprouting in all over Greece with the sixth refugee housing squat opening yesterday in Athens at Kaningos / Kapodistriou in the centre of Athens. “open borders – open houses” it says on a banner outside the building.

Victoria Square - Refugees Welcome

Victoria Square – Refugees Welcome

One of the first squats which opened to host refugees was Notara 26 / Exarhia on 25. September 2015. In the former building of the insurance fund ETAM, which had been empty for years activists at first provided for 35 places. Meanwhile more than 120 are hosted there as needs grew rapidly. A priority is given to families and minors. Papers are not any matter to be accommodated. In the beginning refugees stayed 2-3 days only transiting Athens to move on to the Balkans fast. Nowadays with the Balkan corridor closed, refugees stay out much longer. Activists try to find longterm solutions for people hosted long time to be able and offer rooms also again to newcomers. The squat is running now for months with the support of activists and donations only.

Hot Spot Moria

Hot Spot Moria

In beginning of December Orfanotrofio (the orphanage) opened in Thessaloniki when more and more refugees got stuck in Idomeni at the border to FYROM following the limitation in allowing the border crossing only to Syrians, Iraqis and Afghans. Later on in February 18 also Afghans were not allowed anymore to cross until recently when the border was closed to all. The orphanage fits about 100 persons.

In Athens in January Themistokleous 58 / Exarhia opened with about 40 places. Another squat was established in Patrizia with about 18 places for refugees and in the end of February the gates of the famous Athens Polytechnikums were opened. The last available number of hosted refugees was 70. The number is growing.

Protest at the detention centre in Corinth reveals inhuman and degrading detention conditions

The provisory detention centre for sans-papiers was opened about four months ago in an overnight action by the Ministry of Citizen Protection and Public Order. It is one of three mass detention centres – the others are located in Xanthi and in Komotini – which were set up by the new government in the summer to fit the thousand arrested sans-papiers captured during the Xenios Dias sweep operation. There have been repeated protests by the mayor of Corinth against the creation of this detention centre. He even reached the point to cut off the water supply.

Corinth provisory detention center in a former army camp

The building was originally an army camp at the outskirts of Corinth city. Sans-papiers were arrested in massive sweeps and were brought from various places, such as Corinth and Patras, to this detention centre. A couple of NGOs have tried ever since to enter the prison in order to monitor the situation, screen the detainees and offer legal aid, but access has been denied. They could only see a hand full of detainees of whom they had their names in advance.

Yesterday, solidarity groups from Patras and Corinth but also from other places hold a protest in front of the detention centre. A delegation of seven persons entered the detention centre (with 2 parliamentarians of Syriza, a doctor, a lawyer, interpreters and members of the Movement for the Support of the Rights of Refugees and Migrant of Patras as well as the Antirascist Initiative of Corinth) More than 650 persons were detained in the overcrowded detention centre for the reason of “illegal entry”, “illegal stay” or “illegal exit” to/in/from Greece.

Detainees reported to the delegation that they were lacking warm water, they have insufficient food, no access to information and lawyers and seldom visits of doctors always without any interpreters, many lack medicine they need to take and thus remain sick in their cells.
Among the detainees were many minors, there were family fathers whose families upon their arrest were left behind without anyone to take care, there were persons who wanted to apply for asylum but could not manage and others who had applied 4 months earlier but were not released within the legal maximum period of detention for asylum seekers (3 months). Others had managed to apply for asylum but received during detention the rejection and lacked any information and legal aid to appeal within the given period of 15 days, therefore, falling out of the asylum system.
Reportedly, there are also many cases of ill-treatment by the authorities.

No concentration camps!
Never and nowhere!

best news (in greek)

see also older articles:
zougla tv (in greek)
letter by the syndicate of the police concerning hygiene in the detention centre of Corinth, October 17, 2012 (in greek)

read also the press release of the NGO AITIMA, September 13, 2012 (in greek)

December 23, 2011: Migrants and Greeks demonstrate together in Patras against police repression

People from Afghanistan, Sudan, Eritrea, Morocco, Algeria, Greece and many other countries demonstrate today against the police repression in Patras. Reason for the protest is the recent accident of a 16-year-old Afghan who while trying to escape the police fell of a building. He is still severely injured in the hospital.

Stop police assaulting us, we have to live in security, we need human rights!


Such kind of “accidents” are no exception in Patras the main transit port city for sans-papiers who try to leave Greece. Sans-papiers have to confront daily police and coast guard brutality, police raids and traffic accidents while trying to escape the police forces who chase them down, arrest, beat and arrest them.

read a recent article about the situation in Patras (in french)
Dans l’enfer des immigrants clandestins, by Jean-Simon Gagné

Demonstration in front of the court of Athens (Evelpidon) on the 12th of December 9am: Case of Racist attacks against migrants


Invitation for the protest against the fascists in greek

9th of May 2011: Protest of Afghan and Iranian Refugees in front of the Ministry

Announcement of the protesting refugees (in Greek)


09.05.2011: Protest infront of the Ministry of the Protection of the Citizen, Athens

The Afghan and the Irani hunger strikers call for a common protest infront of the Ministry of the Protection of the Citizen at the 9th of May 2011.
In their common declaration they denounce the under-functioning of the asylum committees and the ongoing policy of zero asylum recognitions. Although the government had announced that 17 committees would start their work in the proceeding of asylum claims in the beginning of 2011 there are until now only 3 working and even these have additional technical and practical problems such as lacking money for ink!
Call for common protest by Afghan and Iranian refugees (in Greek)

Friday, 8th October: Protest against fascists in Attiki and police beating of Dublin II returnee

Demonstration of solidary people and Afghan refugees in Attiki

This is one of the seldom afternoons that the afghans reconquerεδ the square. A group of 1000 people, among them many Afghan refugees, women and children gathered in the afternoon in Attiki Square to protest against the fascist movement that is occupying the place since the end of September 2010 and that already has expulsed all forms of human life from the St. Panteleimon Church.

Continue reading ‘Friday, 8th October: Protest against fascists in Attiki and police beating of Dublin II returnee’

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... is like a “paper boat”. We chose this as a metaphor for what we want to create and for the situation of refugees and migrants in Greece. The paper boat is a folded boat able to swim – for a while. Then you have to build a new one to go on travelling. A paper boat is symbolic for the journey of life, vulnerable but in your own hands and to be recreated again and again. It is simple, but it carries many hopes and dreams. It can dance on a turbulent sea. It belongs to everybody. And it might become the small version – like a first draft – of a welcome-space.

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