Greece: Text of compa Gustavo Quiroga González, imprisoned since the eviction of Delta squat in Thessaloniki

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On September 12th, at 6.30am, Delta occupied social centre was evicted. In the past, this building served as a university residence hall of the Alexandreio Technological Education Institute of Thessaloniki, and was occupied since 2007. During the eviction, ten of us were arrested after suffering the aggression of the law enforcement agents of the police. The cops destroyed everything they could lay their hands on (furnishings, windows, sinks, lamps, and so on) and smashed as much as possible in half an hour; half an hour of recreation for them.

We all received suspended prison sentences and three years’ probation, and appealed the ruling. Besides that, I was sentenced to eight months more than others and a fine of €3,200 for possession of forged travel documents, without being given an expert opinion to verify that allegation. Thereafter began a nightmare of oppression against me. They took me to the prison-transfer centre, into a detention ward for aliens which is practically a CIE–immigrant detention centre, where the process of my deportation began because, according to police estimates, I’m a danger to public order and security of the Greek society.

Three days after my conviction, it was evidenced by an expert opinion of the police that all of my documents are authentic. Not only did this happen but they refused to give me back my authentic and legal documents and keep me imprisoned till this day under inhumane and humiliating conditions, and now the cops put all their effort to deport me to Colombia, a country where I have no link whatsoever. I still don’t know what will happen, but I have been incarcerated in this facility (in Diavata) since September 15th, and I do not accept my expulsion to Colombia. For the time being, I’m waiting for a solution and remain behind bars.

A few words about the conditions of my detention

It’s widely known that prisons in various European States have isolation cells in order to quell any revolutionary reaction, that serve as a type of punishment for prisoners who do not comply with the prison rules. Each country has its own system. In Spain, for example, there is the regime of ‘FIES–internal system of special surveillance’, in Germany the ‘white cells’, etc. Each country has its own, some more cruel than others but all inhumane.

What has any of this to do with the immigration camps? The various States use similar practices for the operation of that nightmare. Just for the record, here are a few examples: when you’re in solitary confinement you do not have any type of contact with other prisoners, while in an immigrant detention centre you’re isolated from others and only have contact with 16 to 17 people who are in the same cell.

In solitary confinement you cannot receive any visitors; in an immigrant detention centre the majority of prisoners do not have anyone to visit them. In solitary confinement you have the right to fresh air for a few minutes every day; in a CIE you are locked up in your cell 24 hours a day. When you’re put into solitary confinement it is because you’ve caused certain problems for the penitentiary system; to be put into an immigrant detention centre, all you need is to be without a piece of paper that says you are legal. In solitary confinement, they give you shit food, and in the CIE you have to pay for it! When you are in the hole at least you get a bed; because in the detention centre the floor is your bed. I could continue with other examples but the conclusion is the same: both are as cruel as eachother.

In the Thessaloniki immigration detention centre, there are people who have spent various months in one cell, where a person can take ten steps forward, ten steps back, and return to the point where they started – it is a real cage. All this creates both physical as well as psychological problems. The days and months go by without seeing the sun or feeling the wind. These are months where one lives without knowing what goes on outside the walls as the guards only put shit TV programmes on, as if it is prohibited to see the news. This is evidently another form of supervision and maintenance of order in that hellish prison. Other problems include all types of disease, drug addiction problems and psychiatric conditions that are generated here or existed previously and just get worse here.

The digestive system suffers from the products sold here (sandwiches, coffee, coca-cola, etc.). There are people who need a specific diet that is impossible to follow here; others have not drunk anything warm for months.

The worst thing is seeing the prisoners (despite all they have suffered) thinking they deserve all that is happening to them as they are clandestine in Europe, and this is a result of the prison guards’ propaganda. And there are people like myself who, even if we’re not clandestine in the country, are submitted to every type of accusation so that they can throw us out of Europe, using every dirty trick possible.

They call terrorists all those people who think like I do. Our terrorism is the attack against capitalism; their terrorism is the destruction of thousands of lives under the auspices of democracy. Democracy and Capital imprison us like animals, torturing us physically and psychologically.

Obviously, I don’t only criticize the politicians but also you who vote for them.

Your vote contributes to thousands of persons remaining in that situation. Your vote legalizes the torture, contributes to the maintenance of the detention centres, and the state systems of oppression. It is you who is to blame, who adopts the alive-dead role and collaborates with the democratic system. I suppose that when you are reading this message you will throw it away to the dustbin. You will continue with your falsified liberty, ignoring what is happening around you.

You will continue your programmed life—home, work, home—and in your free time you’ll spend the little that your boss ‘gives’ you for eight or ten hours work each day. Where is your freedom? Is it in the supermarket? Picking the shampoo brand you like and deciding whether to buy coca-cola or fanta? Or in the drugs on which you spend your money? When you think like this, you forget you are selling off your life.

To summarize, you are a link in the consumption chain, which is what our oppressors want, and this is how they perceive our existence, in terms of consumption and production potential. You, who says that the word democracy is all about freedom, lie to yourself – you are a hypocrite! And when you claim that you prefer democracy to dictatorship my answer is: do you want a kick in the back or a punch in the mouth? If you’re even a little bit smart, I’m hoping you’ll understand this metaphor.


Anarchy here and now

Gustavo Quiroga
Anarchist immigrant from the CIEs of Thessaloniki

in Spanish / Greek / Italian / Russian / French

+ call for international solidarity

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