- Teachers occupy the National Broadcasting Corporation.
Teachers that work under precarious conditions in the public sector (not hired permanently) occupied the studio of the National Broadcasting Corporation in order to step in during a television program where the minister of education was invited. There was a clash with riot police and they beat up teachers brutally, however they fought back and remained in the studio. Although they were not allowed to speak live, they managed to get a video with their denunciations broadcast in the night’s news bulletin. A spontaneous gathering and solidarity demo in the area followed.
- An international solidarity communiqué on the situation in Greece was written by CGT (Spain), CNT (France), Union Syndicale Solidaires (France), CUB (Italy), USI (Italy), SdL (Italy), ESK (Basque country), Confederación Intersindical.
- Anarchist Aris Seirinidis is arrested in Athens; he is put to jail in pretrial detention on fabricated charges.
Aris Serinidis was arrested in the neighborhood of Petralona. Initial charges against him concerned a robbery that had taken place in a Praktiker branch earlier on. However, no evidence relating him with the robbery was found. He was arrested for gun possession and resistance (both misdemeanors) and new “clues” were invented to hold him in pretrial detention (which may last up to 18 months): he was accused of shooting against a riot police unit in Exarcheia in June 2009. The story of the so-called “nutter with the sombrero hat” who shot against policemen in bermuda shorts, flip-flops and sombrero. The DNA they had collected from a mask after the shooting supposedly matches the DNA on Aris’ wallet. Solidarity to the social fighters Aris Seirinidis and Simos Seisidis –he was arrested that very same night in another neighborhood of Athens.
- Anarchist Simos Seisidis has his leg amputated after police fire against him – constant need for blood donation.
Simos Seisidis was arrested in the early hours of 4th May in Athens. There was a price on his head on charges relating him to the so-called “robbers in black” –the prisoner anarchist Yannis Dimitrakis is accused of being a member of the same group. He is hospitalized under conditions that reflect the extent of state arbitrariness and lack of medical ethics. On 28 May, his leg was amputated. After the experience of Savvas Xiros (imprisoned for membership in the “17 November Revolutionary Organization”) and Yannis Dimitrakis, we witness once more intensive care units become scenes of torture and police brutality. Simos was interrogated under the influence of medication, however it was decided he be held in pretrial detention. He is still in intensive care (Evaggelismos hospital) and his poor health condition requires as a minimum he not be sent to jail.
- General strike and demos all over Greece with massive participation; the murder of 3 bank employees as the building is set on fire, however, clouds over the rallies. The police launch brutal attacks by way of “reprisal”.
The trade unions GSEE and ADEDY, along with the Communist’s Party Union PAME called a general strike. Many were those who took to the streets against the decision of the socialist ruling party (PASOK)to sign the IMF bail out plan. In Athens, demonstrators were estimated at around 200.000. Enraged, they made several attempts to go in the parliament. The riot police try to stop them by ruthlessly hitting and teargassing.
Big news agencies swiftly sent out the news on the tragic death of the 3 bank employees in the centre of Athens, which were by no means victims of revolutionary counter-violence. They suffocated after Marfin bank was torched alight under obscure circumstances. On a day of a massive demo, the employees were forced to remain in the bank, with the fire exits locked. A colleague of the victims working in the same branch denounced the criminal negligence of the bank’s owner, Greek tycoon Vgenopoulos. As the news spread, shock and distress prevailed. The state immediately targeted the a/a milieu and talked against participating in demos in general. The struggle of people justly fighting was blemished by the media – journalists broke the strike in order to facilitate the state propaganda. Police then raided houses, cafes, social centers and squats. The anarchist squat on Zaimi St. in Exarcheia was evacuated (there was gunfire);11 squatters were taken to the police headquarters GADA. 23 people in total were arrested that night in Athens.
Several texts with different perspectives on 5 May (individual and collective) have been written. Discussions on counter-violence and the most appropriate and effective forms of action are ongoing, with the constant aim to enhance our struggle for dignity and social liberation.
Α selection of translated statements on Occupied London.
- An attempt was made to reoccupy the evacuated squat on Zaimi St., Exarcheia; police however sealed up the building.
- The Union Of Bank Workers announce 24 hours nationwide strike in memory of the dead workers in Marfin Bank.
- More than 12.000 people gathered outside the parliament to express their solidarity to the families of the deceased bank employees, as well as their determination to fight against the austerity measures.
The rally was peaceful, when all of a sudden police dispersed the crowd violently teargassing and throwing stun grenades. Quite a few people were injured, and many were caught.
- International solidarity to the struggle of workers in Greece by Alternative Libertaire (France), Workers Solidarity Movement (Ireland), Federazione dei Comunisti Anarchici (Italy), Organisation Socialiste Libertaire (Switzerland), Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front (South Africa), Unión Socialista Libertaria (Peru), Workers Solidarity Alliance (USA/Canada), Common Action (USA), Union Communiste Libertaire (Canada), Revista Hombre y Sociedad (Chile), Melbourne Anarchist Communist Group (Australia), Miami Autonomy & Solidarity (USA), Libertære Socialister (Denmark).
You may read it here.
- The Greek government cut pensions to buy armaments.
The Greek government buys armaments leading thousands of households around the country to bankruptcy, while at the same time propagandizes “the reduction of the public financial deficiency” at any cost. Even the mainstream media report that the total military spending comes to nearly 1.3 billion euros (!), after signing agreements with the loaners of the Greek government: U.S., Germany and France.
- A bomb explodes outside the women’s prison ward in Koridallos prison (Athens) and the Court House in Thessaloniki (respective dates). Responsibility is claimed by the Conspiracy of Cells of Fire in solidarity to imprisoned comrades.
- 7 people from 4 Greek cities (Athens, Thessaloniki, Ioannina and Corinth) make a public collective announcement on their denial to do their military service (compulsory for men in Greece)
A brief excerpt: “We’ll say it in simple words. We don’t wanna go to the army. We don’t want the army nor for us, nor for others. We are repulsed by this structure of power, hierarchy, discipline and illogicalness, which levels one’s personality, diversity and uniqueness. The army is a system that exists in order to exert violence on others, as well as on those who form it.”
- The tycoon Vgenopoulos (owner of Marfin Bank) publishes a cheeky letter basically describing his bank as the perfect and most secure workplace ever, thus showing his disrespect towards the death of the 3 bank employees on May 5th. He states, among other things, that the announcement by the victims’ colleague (check link above) is phony.
- Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front, South Africa: A text entitled “The anarchists are queer and proud.”
- Russia: Rail Congestion and violent clashes with police in Kouzmpas after 66 workers died in an explosion at one of the largest mines in the country. Video from the riot with the police.
- Weak participation and numbness after the 5th May events were obvious in the demos all over Greece. In Athens, in particular, police were very provocative – they cordoned off social centers, made arrests and undercover policemen stood all over the city making Athens look like an occupied city.
- Several grassroots committees have been formed in various neighborhoods. The struggle against toll posts is ongoing (not only have fees gone up, but several new toll posts have sprung up and alternative itineraries have been blocked, making it compulsory for people that live fairly close to cities to pay when going to work or driving their children to school).
- Turkey: Establishment of a Platform of Struggling Workers. Call for international support.
- Port police obstruct the preparations of the cargo ship due to set sail for blockaded Gaza in the following days.
- Two ships, first the cargo “Free Mediterranean” and later on the passenger ship “Sfendoni”, sailed out of the port of Piraeus, in order to join the international Freedom Flotilla and head towards blockaded Gaza.
8 ships in total (3 of them cargoes), carrying construction materials banned by Israel and medical supplies, set off to try break the silence of the mass media on the genocide of the Palestinian people. Israel has made announcements that the ships will be confronted by the Israeli navy. “Enraged” Israelis have also made statements saying that they will recruit a “counter-fleet” in order to confront the activists in the open waters.
At the same time, the Greek state began army drills with Israel in the Aegean and Ionian Sea!
- New measures were announced by the Greek government on social security (pensions etc.) – introduced under IMF/EU monitoring. Major changes have been made and once we have a clear picture of all amendments [a detailed list will be posted].
- The international antiauthoritarian festival “B-Fest” began in Athens. This 5-day event (26-30/5) was organized by the Antiauthoritarian Newspaper “Babylonia”.
You may also visit: bfest.gr
- Israel attacked the flotilla on its way to Gaza.
Following Ship to Gaza’s announcement on the atrocities of the Israeli army, many statements from all over the country follow. The Greek ministry of foreign affairs could not be reached when activists of the flotilla and members of Ship to Gaza tried to make urgent calls. Israel denied giving accurate information on the number and the identity of the dead.
Calls for solidarity rallies and demos were immediately made all over the world. Clashes outside the Israeli embassy in Athens were fierce – check some photos in Athens IMC.
A major demo against the attack took place in Tel Aviv, among other cities of the world.