Athens: New social squat in Holargos

Urgent appeal from squatters

On Monday we faced police intimidation by DIAS motorcyclist cops who were verifying the identities of people that were outside the liberated social space of Holargos, located in 50, Katsimpiri and Ventouri streets. No pasaran! We call collectivities, popular assemblies, individuals on Tuesday, November 15th, at 17.30 in the City Hall of Holargos in Perikleous & 25 Martiou streets. We’ll be either slaves, or free!

According to a post on Indymedia Athens, in the morning of Saturday, November 12th, members of the popular assembly of Holargos–Papagou (northern suburbs of Athens) occupied an abandoned house in Holargos —property classified as ‘owner unknown’. After they carefully picked the old items of the house and put them in a store room, they threw themselves to work, weeding the garden, pruning, cleaning, taking out a lot of trash, arranging the space.

Of course, neighbours and the cops did not remain unmoved by this initiative… The neighbours (and not the absent owner) came out to defend the former abandoned house. The cops were obviously worried because the residence of the public order minister Christos Papoutsis is only a few blocks away. At first, two patrol cars of the local department came, but left relatively quickly. After two hours, a small army of DIAS motorcycle units, plainclothes cops and forces of the local police station came to tell the squatters that they are illegal. When they realized that squatters had done their ‘research,’ and there was no claimant for this home, cops were forced to leave. But they verified the identity of a comrade who happens to be a lawyer and member of the popular assembly. The squatters continued their work at the house and handed out a text to neighbours and passersby.

At about 19.00 on the same day a tactical assembly was held, and a patrol car soon came by. The meeting was not adjourned, and the people even decided to organize a collective kitchen on Sunday noon, in order to invite the entire neighbourhood. Shortly before the end of the assembly, the comrade received one more threatening phone call from the local police station. Also, a police squad lined up a few feet from the occupied dwelling. Members of the assembly went to the police station to support their comrade, where the issue of ownership was never clarified; thus, no other harassment from cops followed. On Sunday afternoon the collective kitchen took place with large turnout, in a climate of solidarity and camaraderie (see photos).

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