Freedom of movement is everybody’s right!
copyright: Salinia Stroux
Freedom of movement is everybody’s right!
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.
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.
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!
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.
read a recent article about the situation in Patras (in french)
Dans l’enfer des immigrants clandestins, by Jean-Simon Gagné
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)
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.